DeKalb Schools reorganization to shift employees, rename departments

Interim Superintended Ramona Tyson, talks with DeKalb County Board of Education member Allyson Gevertz before the board's meeting on Feb. 10, 2020, at district headquarters. (AJC FILE PHOTO)
Interim Superintended Ramona Tyson, talks with DeKalb County Board of Education member Allyson Gevertz before the board's meeting on Feb. 10, 2020, at district headquarters. (AJC FILE PHOTO)

Credit: (Miguel Martinez for The Atlanta

Credit: (Miguel Martinez for The Atlanta

DeKalb County School District Interim Superintendent Ramona Tyson announced sweeping changes to the district's organizational structure Monday, reassigning longtime employees, shifting entire departments, even renaming a department from a name announced several years ago.

The board approved phase one of Tyson’s reorganization plan, which affects six administration categories, during its monthly meeting Monday.

Among other things, Tyson recommended during the DeKalb County Board of Education's monthly committee of the whole meeting that the district rename its Human Capital Management office to Human Resources. That change was made in 2015 under former Superintendent Steve Green, but it never caught on with employees or parents, who complained over the years that the name was tone deaf.

Tyson also announced that Regional Superintendent Bernetta Jones would be reassigned to the superintendent's office for the remainder of the school year and will retire from the district this summer after 21 years. Other key personnel changes included:

  • Regional Superintendent Sherry Johnson moving to the curriculum and instruction division
  • Chief of Staff Sherry Everett moving to the office of accountability
  • Interim Chief Legal Officer Merissa Key moving to the human resources department
  • Interim Chief Operations Officer Dan Drake moving to the information technology department

Tyson added that the office of legal affairs would move under human resources and an open records request specialist position would be created to help handle any received records requests. The chief legal officer position and a legal administrator position will be eliminated.

She thanked the shifted employees for their service, especially Drake, who has led his division since Joshua Williams left in August 2018. 

“A lot of people don’t understand that that job is a heavy lift,” she said. “Every day. Every week. Every month... . Dan, we appreciate you filling the gap and taking on the tough assignments.

“I know more than anyone the importance of the role of interim.”

Several promotions also were announced, including elevating area principals Melanie Pearch and Rodney Swanson to regional superintendent roles. Monika Davis, who had been the interim information technology chief for more than a year until recently, will become executive director for information and innovation for that division.

In Other News