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Education

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Process ‘smoother’ here than elsewhere

Looking back on integration

By Hannah Strong

Gloria Mackey Gordon, wearing her first-day-of-school dress and penny loafers, drove her blue Chevy to pick up three friends.
It was 1966 and Gordon was a junior.
She, Ronny Lowery, and Charles and Edgar Smith were on the way to their first day at Lancaster Senior High School.
They walked into the building and got stares. Some called them names.
They were four of 15 black students in the school. The other 822 students were white.
“We all walked in and everyone just looked at us,” Gordon said.


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School district and Kershaw to share site near bandstand

By Hannah Strong

The Lancaster County School District and the town of Kershaw have agreed to share property on North Matson Street for a car loop and parking spots, and the town says it will be a win-win.
The town announced plans to build a bandstand on the property beside Kershaw Elementary School in July. That construction will be complete by the end of January.
The elementary school will soon be in the process of moving its entrance from North Rollins Drive to North Matson Street and is in need of a car loop to keep cars from backing up on the street.


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Schools’ HR director resigns, position might be left unfilled

By Hannah Strong

The Lancaster County School District’s human resources director resigned Thursday after being on personal leave since Oct. 4, and school officials are unsure if they will fill the job.
Dr. Gwendolyn Conner, who came to the district in June 2008 as HR director, resigned Thursday.
Conner said she took the personal leave because of several unexpected deaths in her family.
“It’s been an emotional time,” she said. “That has really consumed the family.”


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Dogs sniff out marijuana in Buford High parking lot

By Hannah Strong

The school district broke out the drug dogs for a random screening at Buford High School on Tuesday, and a student was charged with having marijuana in his truck.
Jacob Marshall Smith, 17, was charged with simple possession of marijuana after drugs dogs made a pass through the school parking lot, where his truck was located. Marijuana and two small knives were found Smith’s vehicle, according to a report from the Lancaster County Sheriff’s Office.


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LHS senior is district’s 1st registered apprentice

By Hannah Strong

A Lancaster High student has recently become the Lancaster County School District’s first registered apprentice.


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LHS basketball game will use metal detectors tonight

By Hannah Strong

The Lancaster County School District, in an effort to send a message that schools are safe after school hours, will have metal detectors set up for the first time at a basketball game during Lancaster High’s home game tonight.
This effort is the start of random metal-detector checks at school activities.
LCSD Superintendent Jonathan Phipps said the district has had no threats about after-school activities or for this particular game against Andrew Jackson High.


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Bus driver protects kids, takes bite from a pit bull

By Hannah Strong

A Lancaster County school bus driver was bitten by a pit bull Wednesday morning on J.B. Denton Road after the dog slipped through the closing bus doors.
The driver was able to finish her route, which picks up Lancaster High students, and was later taken to urgent care to be checked.
“She’s going to be OK,” said Bryan Vaughn, Lancaster County School District safety and transportation director. “She did a good job of keeping that dog away from other kids…. That was her primary goal and responsibility.”


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USCL is listed as top 2-year college in state

By Hannah Strong

A national school-ranking organization has named USC Lancaster the top two-year college in the Palmetto State, and No. 4 in the country.
Niche.com, a Pittsburgh-based company that analyzes schools nationally, gives USCL a B-plus grade in its 2018 best community colleges ranking.
“I am honored, but not surprised, that USC Lancaster would be named the top two-year campus in South Carolina,” said Dr. Walt Collins, dean of USCL. “This is a credit to our devoted and dedicated faculty and staff who work hard toward the success of our students.”


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Ends 24-year battle over funding in poor, rural districts

Court dismisses S.C. education suit

By Mark Manicone

The S.C. Supreme Court has reversed its 2014 order that the legislature address the poor quality of education in rural school districts across the state, ending a 24-year legal battle over the issue.
The 3-2 ruling Nov. 17 dismissed the lawsuit Abbeville School District v. the State of South Carolina. The 2014 ruling was criticized at the time as judicial intrusion into the General Assembly’s and governor’s responsibilities, and the high court, with two new members since the earlier decision, took that side this month.


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300 sign petition pushing DOT for sidewalk, crosswalks

Street safety at issue for IL schools

By Hannah Strong

An Indian Land Middle School parent has collected about 300 signatures on a petition pushing SCDOT to put in sidewalks and crosswalks on River Road and U.S. 521.
“I don’t want someone to get hurt or killed before they decide to put in crosswalks and sidewalks,” said Pam Houge, who started the petition Oct. 26 and got about 300 signatures in two weeks. “It shouldn’t take someone getting killed before they do something.
“I’m on a mission. I’m not going to stop until this is done.”


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