Parents frustrated with DeKalb Schools registration hiccups

- Some DeKalb County parents said they were frustrated by the new school registration process that delayed their children getting to class.

"I wish it could've been better and improved," said Kamaria Emmanuel, who finally registered her son for Kindergarten on Wednesday.  "It shouldn't take that long.  Three days my son's missing school."

The district has used their online registration system for a few years, but this year, they consolidated all in-person registrations to the old Avondale High School site.

"We apologize for any inconvenience, but hope that parents and the community understand our efforts to try to make registration effortless for parents.  So that they can come in and register multiple children at one time," said DeKalb County Deputy Superintendent Vasanne Tinsley.

According to school officials, the district's online registration portal was available all summer, but they had an influx of traffic in the final days leading up to the first day of school.  Many parents reported problems with the site and said they were forced to try again in person.

Tinsley said there were approximately 500 new online applications on Monday and more still on Tuesday.  They plan to look into whether the increased site traffic lead to problems for those who tried to log on.

"I tried to register them online, but I had trouble uploading the documents," said Lisa Smith, who spent two days registering two of her children.

Smith said she has to return with additional paperwork Thursday to complete registration for her youngest child.

"This was not a good idea," she added.

The district could not provide exact numbers on how many children missed class this week, but estimated it was several hundred.  That, however, represents only about one percent of the district's more than 100,000 students.

Officials said they have taken parents' feedback seriously.

"As this is a learning opportunity for us, we realize that there are some other things that we can do a bit differently to make things smoother for next year," said Tinsley.

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