Clayton Schools is not the first non-traditional tenant of Southlake. Call center Chime Solutions occupies what was once a JCPenney store at the mall while the Morrow Conference and Event Center replaced an older Macy’s store in the building. (Cincinnati-based Macy’s maintains a different location in the mall.)
The Sears store at Southlake was one of more than five dozen stores Sears announced it would close in 2018.
The school system announced it had purchased the building after a board meeting this past August, but did not provide many details. It closed on the property, which covers about 15 acres, on Oct. 22.
Leaders said the district will spend $50 million renovating the building.
“I am truly looking forward to honoring our graduating seniors indoors at a facility in Clayton County with sufficient seating and parking to support everyone who wishes to attend,” Clayton Board of Education chairwoman Jessie Goree said.