Career Academy Presents Important Numbers to Board


The City Schools of Decatur Board made the decision on the morning of Nov. 4th.

Benjamin Shewan

On Tuesday, Aug. 9, the Decatur Career Academy (DCA) presented its findings and numbers from the 2021-22 school year. Duane Sprull, the director of the DCA, Terra Smiley, the ​​Work Based Learning (WBL) and Youth Apprenticeship Coordinator, and Kunle Oguneye, a member of the SLT and DCA advisory committee, presented these numbers.

Sprull presented a number of highlights for the DCA. Last year, the DCA received their Career Academy Certification and passed their Monitoring and Risk Assessment from the Georgia Department of Education. It was also revealed that Smiley went to the WBL Top Gun training which honors 20 of the best WBL coordinators and allows them to continue to sharpen their skills.

As for the numerical data, Sprull explained that 129 students passed the End of Pathway Exam and 17 students completed the Summer Early College Program. He also allowed junior Maeve Gallentine to present her experience at the FCCLA Nationals in San Diego and discuss her work and time spent towards winning silver at nationals. Additionally, it was announced that 2 teachers became Computer Science Certified at Beacon Hill Middle School and Decatur High School (DHS).

Oguneye shared how he was able to reach out to Sprull and organize a visit to the Georgia Piedmont Technical College (GPTC) in the 2020-21 school year. From the visit, it showed the students about the ranging types of engineering that they could see and go into post-high school. At the end of the 2020-21 school year, five students went on the visit. However, the Board continued to support the visit and this past year over 30 students attended the visit and 32 students enrolled at GPTC.

Lastly, Smiley introduced her numbers from the previous year’s work-based learning. In the 2021-22 school year, 105 students earned a collective $176,542 and had an economic impact of $706,168. In the previous year, 12 new employers also joined the work-based learning program and was the DCA’s first shadow experience cohort shadowing CSD district employees.

Furthermore, she explained upcoming opportunities for the DCA and WBL, including adding new architecture and computer science partners as well as more job shadow opportunities for non-WBL students. She also aims for DHS to host an onsite hiring event for students in the Spring.