Cobb County Schools will move forward with building a multi-purpose facility despite concerns from the community.

Cobb County Schools will move forward with building a multi-purpose facility despite concerns from the community.

In December 2023, the Cobb County Board of Education unanimously approved the purchase of approximately 1.31 acres of land at Marietta, GA for $3 million. This land is located next to the district’s central office and is intended to be used to build the $50 million multi-purpose facility the board approved in May 2023. 

As the center’s planning continues, so does criticism from Cobb’s parents, educators, and even some board members. 

A recent “Letter to the Editor” from the Marietta Daily Journal written by Steven Lang shows concerns about the price and planning of the facility. The letter references a recently released Facility Rental/Use Agreement between Cobb County and Kenesaw State University, where Cobb held its graduation ceremonies in 2023. A page of the contract showed it cost approximately $44,000 total to rent out facilities for commencement from Kennesaw that year. The letter compares that to the $50 million to build the facility and argues that the district should spend that money on other resources. 

The letter reads “Instead of performing a feasibility study to figure out whether an 8,000-seat stadium made any financial sense, the Cobb County School District allocated $50,000,000 in SPLOST funds towards the building of a brand new stadium which replicates what we already have available.”

Watching the Funds – Cobb, a group of engaged stakeholders that keep track of the district’s finances, hosted an FY2025 Budget Info Session where board members Becky Sayler (D) and Nichelle Davis (D) served as panelists.

When asked about the facility during the info session, both Sayler and Davis said they voted no to the facility building because they were concerned about the funding and emphasized that it would not affect the FY2025 budget. However, it will impact the budget in the future if its planning continues.

“I would love to think that it will save us money long term and rental fees.” said Sayler. “We host a lot of events besides graduations like the teacher retirement luncheon, staff retirement luncheon, teacher of the year events, classified employee of the year events. So like currently, we rent space at the Cobb Energy Centre and Rossell Street Baptist and over at Jim R. Miller Park and Kennesaw University for graduation. So that’s a lot of expenses. I would love to think it would help us but we still don’t have those details. And so that’s been my hesitation.”

“$25 to $30 million roughly was set aside for this project.” said Davis. “Which is great, but then the concern becomes Okay, so similar to like the foundations versus like title 1, we could expedite fixing our school buildings or expedite some of those other projects that if we use that money definitely into like our direct needs that exists right now. That would be a better use of those funds. Those are conversations that people are bringing, right? And it’s hard for me to say or fight that when I feel like transparency like okay, I haven’t got that information either.” 

Watching the Funds – Cobb encourages Cobb County residents to attend the upcoming Cobb Board meeting this Thursday at 7:00 p.m. and demand transparency from the board members regarding this facility. 

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1 Comment

  1. This is absurd and makes NO sense do this seriously you could get a 5 or 10 year contract to rent a facility on these dates that you need them for and it would make it a lot cheaper to rent the facility and take 48 or 49 million and use that towards the things that they could actually benefit from seriously someone should be fired bc this is the most absurd and ridiculously stupid thing I’ve ever heard of!

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