COVID-19 Parent Advisory Team
City Schools of Decatur’s COVID-19 Parent Advisory Team serves in an advisory capacity to the CSD Superintendent.
The purpose of the COVID-19 Parent Advisory Team is to:
- Review established and proposed COVID-19 protocols and procedures in CSD and provide the parent perspective before changes or new procedures are implemented
COVID-19 Parent Advisory Team Members
- Jill Wasserman - Jill is a F.AVE parent, with twin daughters in fifth grade. She is a lawyer who has been practicing for over twenty years in a variety of settings, for the last seven years as a commercial lawyer for a company that makes veterinary medicines and other animal health products. On a personal note, Jill is a lifelong resident of the Atlanta area, having grown up in DeKalb County, and has lived in the city of Decatur (in the same house in Oakhurst) since 2005. Jill presently serves as the Wylde Center board chair. She is married to Stephen Devereaux, also a local attorney, and in addition to their fifth-graders, they have a daughter who is a second-year at Mount Holyoke College and a puppy named Marcy.
- Sara Weathersby - Sara has been serving in the CSD community for many years. She just wrapped up a two-year term serving as the Chair of the Talley SLT. From that position, Sara saw the challenges of educating students during the pandemic from various perspectives. Teachers, administrators, and parents shared questions and concerns at SLT meetings throughout the past academic year. Having heard from those various points of view will help her bring a balanced perspective to the advisory team.
Sara has also volunteered in several capacities in CSD over the past 6 years. She is currently serving as a co-president of the Talley PTO where she has a 4th grader. Sara also has a 6th grader at RMS so she is able to understand that students in different grade bands will have different needs. Sara shared that she will do her best to bring a districtwide view as we move into new phases of the pandemic.
- Shavona McCelp - Shavona is an Advocate for the homeless and underprivileged in our society. For over 15 years she has worked with individuals afflicted with chronic homelessness and mental health. She has experience working with a diverse population and communities in which she brought awareness on being culturally sensitive when serving individuals from various ethnic backgrounds. Shavona received her Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) from the University of Southern Indiana and Master of Social Work (MSW) from Our Lady of The Lake University. Shavona has spent years providing counseling services to individuals/families who are homeless or at risk of homelessness and disadvantaged youth. Shavona is currently the HMIS Data Analyst with Georgia Department of Community Affairs (DCA). Shavona has a passion to serve those in need and helping her community to thrive.
- Becky Slemons - Becky Slemons is a mom of 3: a freshman at Decatur High and twin 6th graders at Renfroe. She is a health communicator with more than 20 years of experience in the public health and nonprofit sectors. Becky holds an MA in Nonprofit Management and an AB in English Literature, both from the University of Georgia. Becky has served in community and volunteer capacities with several City of Decatur and City Schools of Decatur efforts, including as past co-chair of the Talley Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee.
- Alduan Tartt - Dr. Alduan Tartt is a clinical psychologist with twenty one years of experience in treating children, teens, adults, and couples with mental health and relationship challenges. He is a graduate of Morehouse College and was the youngest African-American to receive his doctorate degree in Clinical Psychology from the University of Michigan. Dr. Tartt is the go to psychologist for CNN, HLN, and nationally syndicated radio for mental health, child and family therapy, and marriage. He has received a lifetime achievement award from the NAACP for his work with children and families and formerly served as consulting psychologist for the Oklahoma City Thunder basketball team. He currently consults with the NBA and is married with two daughters (Raquel -15, Trinity-5) and has a son on the way.
- Emily Master - Emily Master has been a resident of Decatur since 2010 and is the mother of four children in CSD: twins in 5th grade at F.AVE and twins in Pre-K at College Heights. She teaches in the Classics department at Emory and has experienced the pandemic both as a parent and as a teacher.
- Jessica Murdock - I have a daughter in 2nd grade and have been active in the SLT and PTA for the past 2 years. During the pandemic, I worked with the school groups to give a voice to the families who chose to remain virtual and support the teachers and students who went back in-person, while helping to plan safe, fun events to continue to engage students with their school. Professionally, I graduated with an MS in 2008 and a DVM in 2012 and completed an Epidemiology Elective Internship through the CDC. I am a veterinarian and currently work in pharmacovigilance for an animal health company, charged with assessing adverse events to products while practicing one weekend a month at my old clinic. I also serve as co-president of the Young Alumni Association through UGA’s Vet School, with a focus on mental health in the industry. I understand that all families are different with different needs and circumstances, and our approach to navigating the pandemic will need to reflect this. I have lived in Decatur since 2012 and hope to contribute a balanced, fact-based perspective to the group to help ensure our kids can thrive.
Marisa Gonzalez-Rouse and her wife Heather have lived in the City of Decatur since 2001. A native South Texan, Marisa first landed in Decatur in 1999 where she fell in love with the trees and the small-town feeling. Marisa is a graduate of the Decatur 101 Class of 2003 and has served as a volunteer coach at the Decatur Recreation Center coaching softball and basketball. Marisa and her wife have three children—two at Winnona Park and one at Renfroe. She is an attorney who has dedicated her practice to serving the immigrant community in the Atlanta, Georgia area. Prior to a career in law, Marisa worked as a web developer. In her spare time, Marisa enjoys hiking, traveling, and watching British mysteries.
- Kent Thagard - Kent and his wife, Heather, have lived in the City of Decatur since 2007 and they currently have two sons, Bennett (7) and Reeves (5), attending Oakhurst Elementary. Prior to moving to Decatur, I lived and worked in midtown Atlanta. We chose to move to Decatur because of its small-town size, community engagement, and high-performing schools.
Throughout the years, our family has supported and participated in various organizations in the City of Decatur and beyond: Decatur Education Foundation; City of Refuge; Families First; Martin Luther King, Jr. Service Project; Children’s Hospital of Atlanta; Charity Water; Chick-fil-A Foundation. Each of these organizations in some shape or form focuses on families and children.
Professionally, I graduated from Auburn University with a degree in Architecture and moved to Atlanta immediately after graduation. During the first 16 years of my career, I worked for several architecture firms executing large and small-scale design projects both domestically and internationally. Currently, I work at the Chick-fil-A Support Center leading teams supporting existing restaurants and international expansion. In addition to leading restaurant development teams, I am part of a work task force centered around COVID-19 focusing on how to reopen our dining rooms safely. This work involves the research and review of CDC guidelines as well as state and local guidelines in addition to understanding the different perspectives of the community and their concerns.
During the past 18+ months, I have experienced how the influence and decisions of others have directly impacted our children’s day-to-day interactions and capacity to learn and grow. I am thankful to have the opportunity to represent families on the City Schools of Decatur’s COVID-19 Parent Advisory Team and influence decisions around procedures and protocols.
CSD Staff Committee Liaisons
- Dr. Maggie Fehrman, Superintendent
- Dr. Lillie Huddleston, Associate Superintendent
- Courtney Burnett, Chief of Staff
- Shonda Moore, School Health Coordinator
Meeting Dates (Virtual)
October 28th @ 6:30 pm - Meeting agenda and recording
December 9th @ 6:30 pm - Meeting agenda and recording