MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) - When you're holed up inside a board room all the time, it can be tough to make decisions that affect the whole community.
The Bibb County Board of Education wanted to avoid that problem.
For board members, a change of pace was welcomed.
"I think it's nice when you can come together as board members and we have a chance to break bread and to talk about various things--it builds relationships," said board member Tom Hudson.
The Bibb County Board of Education took the chance Saturday morning to not only break bread, but get out of the board room and visit schools.
On their tour list were 8 different sites affected by the Five Year Facilities Plan, which adds new schools to the district and closes others.
"There's nothing better than having the board, and the superintendent and his team to come look at the space, think about the environment and culture, and also to think about the future of where we want to take this in partnership with this community," said board member Dr. Wanda West.
The board visited Bernd Elementary first, a school parents opposed closing at a recent board meeting.
"And today has been a great experience for me to actually come and see the building, understand the history, understand the culture of a successful school and what has made this school successful," said board member Dr. Thelma Dillard.
Also on the list was Morgan Elementary, a school surrounded by a neighborhood that board member Tom Hudson felt wasn't good for kids.
"You have gang activity, with graffiti, and you have a lot of abandoned houses, and I don't think it would be wise to make that type of investment of tax dollars into a declining neighborhood," said Hudson.
And that's what the trip was for--for board members to experience the decisions they will make about the future of the district.
"The school is built for the children, so coming out here gives a great insight on determining what we are to do as board members to help our children to continue to be successful," said Dillard.
The Five Year Facilities Plan is still being worked on, and decisions on closings and building new schools are not quite final yet.
The board will continue to discuss changes at their next board meeting in the coming weeks.