Dual Enrollment Students’ Parking Problems Persist


Photo by Ashley Veazey.

Parked cars in the dual enrollment section of the lot.

Ellie Furr, Staff writer

Amidst all the chaos of the start of the school year, one task becomes a priority for many junior and senior students: acquiring a parking spot. However, because there are so many licensed students (and a limited number of spots), this can be a very difficult task.

“Parking at Chamblee is a serious issue,” said senior Lauren Carter.

This issue becomes even more prominent when students who did not pay for a parking spot at the beginning of the school year decide to park on campus anyway. These students often take the spots of some Move On When Ready (MOWR), or dual enrollment students, who don’t come to school until fourth or fifth period following their classes at a local college.

“It’s frustrating, because it adds stress to a part of my day that shouldn’t be stressful,” said Carter, who arrives at Chamblee for her fourth period class. “All I’m doing is trying to come to school and park in a parking spot that I’ve paid for.”

Additionally, once one spot is taken, others are bound to be taken as well.

“Once someone takes someone else’s spot, that person takes another spot and it just ripples out until no one is in the right spot,” said senior Meghan Ashley.

Besides causing frustration for MOWR students, having to search for another parking spot when their own spot is taken can have some other negative effects.

“On days I have classes [at the college], I often run a little late and if someone takes my spot, it adds time to my commute and makes me late to class,” said Ashley.

Many dual students end up parking in visitor parking or staff parking, but this can add an extra layer of anxiety.

“If I have to park in the staff parking, I need to worry about getting a ticket,” said junior Connor Mark.

Many students have had complaints about the seeming lack of action to combat this problem. However, Campus Supervisor Roosevelt Weatherly argues that nothing can be done until the students report incidents to him.

“If no one reports it to me, there’s nothing I can do,” said Weatherly. “So if you see it, report it.”

Another problem Weatherly has seen is that parents also take the spots of MOWR students. Despite notifying parents that they are not permitted to park in numbered spaces (student parking), some parents still do.

“They’ve been informed, but we still have parents parking in students’ spaces,” said Weatherly. “If it happens multiple times, we’ll run their tag.”

An increased number of visitors on a given school day can also cause problems.

“The main issue is when Chamblee hosts large events during the school day,” said Carter. “During these large events the number of visitors invited to our campus vastly outnumbers the number of visitor parking spots we have allotted, meaning that visitors are forced to park in student parking.”

Junior Rebecca Evans remembers one incident specifically where she had trouble parking.

“There was one time last semester where it was hard to find a parking spot, because there were a bunch of parents at the school for a play and there were no parking spots at all,” said Evans.

MOWR students are further frustrated, though, because even when they report the incidents, the problem still persists. Junior Solange Jackson could not park in her spot once during the week of February 18 through 22, and her spot is taken on average three times a week.

“It’s a different person, a different car every day,” said Jackson.

Weatherly is continuing to work on this issue, however, and hopes to see improvement in the coming weeks.

“I’m gonna get with Ms. Sanchez to send out a memo to the students, telling them that they can’t park in somebody else’s spot,” said Weatherly. “I’m hoping that the memo will help. We did it first semester, and it worked pretty well.”