Toomer Elementary principal leaving for Drew Charter School

Posted by Dan Whisenhunt May 8, 2015
A photo of Toomer Elementary students. Photo from TalkUpAPS blog.

A photo of Toomer Elementary students. Photo from TalkUpAPS blog.

This story has been updated. 

Parents of Kirkwood’s Toomer Elementary School received a letter dated May 8 from school Principal Nicole Evans Jones informing them that she is leaving to work at Drew Charter School in East Lake.

Jones said in the letter to parents that she will become Drew’s “Director of Talent.” Her last day at Toomer will be June 30. She has been principal at the school for nearly six years.

“This is a natural professional progression and will allow me the opportunity to expand my work of identifying, recruiting, supporting and retaining great teachers, as well as enrich and deepen my own understanding of teaching, learning and leadership at the middle and high school levels,” Jones wrote.

The news comes two days after Drew Charter pulled the plug on an admissions lottery due to an unspecified technical glitch. Catherine Woodling, director of Communications and Marketing for the East Lake Foundation, the nonprofit that backs the charter school, said that the glitch involved the “unique identifier numbers” used in the lottery.

“It was our first time using this electronic admissions system, so we wanted to ensure that our vendor, InfoSnap, got it right,” Woodling said. “Parents will receive more information about rescheduled lottery very soon.”

Woodling provided the following breakdown of available spaces for each grade at Drew …

Grade – Spaces available

Pre-K – 110

K – 164

1 – 14

2 – 14

3 – 16

4 – 17

5 – 21

6 – 22

7 – 16

8 – 10

9 – 19

10 – 4

11 – 7

“It’s important to note that Drew Charter School reserves the right to manage the number of offers made from the waiting list in each grade level in order to balance class size and to follow best practices,” Woodling said.

Drew Charter is envied by many parents in the Jackson High Cluster. Competition from Drew Charter led to the closure of Coan Middle School, which merged with King Middle. According to figures Atlanta Public Schools released last year, 32.2 percent of students that were zoned to Coan Middle attended Drew instead.

Competition from Drew Charter also prompted parents at Toomer to pursue a K-8 model there, an idea that was ultimately nixed by former Superintendent Erroll Davis.

Read more: Principal Nicole Evans Jones’ letter to Toomer Elementary parents. 

Toomer Letter

About Dan Whisenhunt

Dan Whisenhunt is editor and publisher of

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  • Concerned parent

    How many of the pre-k slots are already filled by children at east lake early learning academy and sheltering arms and how many kindergarten spots are filled by the existing pre-k population?

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