By Jody Steinberg

Cross Keys High School students returned from summer break last week to a different campus than they left. While there are still no signs of the improvements the long-awaited renovation promises to deliver, or even actual activity to indicate that construction or deconstruction has begun, there are signs of change, including a definite increase in the size of the student body.

The official numbers are not yet in, but it looks like enrollment has crept up from last year’s reported 785 students to almost 900 last week – and the roster is still increasing.

Some of the increase can be attributed to the closing of High School Technology North. A number of the certified programs from HSTN are being offered at Cross Keys in the oversized quadruple-sized modular classrooms recently placed on the tennis courts.

Each enormous trailer houses just one program, as the certification requirements include expansive classroom space. The placement of the quadulars uprooted the regular-sized classroom trailers, which were relocated between the regular classroom wings. During the relocation, power lines were cut, so teachers using regular-sized modular classrooms began their pre-opening workweek in dark, hot classrooms with no power.

The popular Automotive Service Technology program is slated to begin at CKHS when renovated building space is finished.

The DeKalb County School System has been increasing its investment in Career Technology programs in high schools with newly constructed CT centers of 12,000 or more square feet. Additions were recently completed at Columbia and McNair, while Chamblee, Clarkston, Druid Hills, Dunwoody, Lakeside and Redan also slated to receive the additions.