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Education

  • Court dismisses S.C. education suit

    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.

  • Street safety at issue for IL schools

    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.”

  • Native American activist Dr. Will Goins dies at 57

    Dr. Will Goins, who had just begun an artist-in-residence program at USC Lancaster’s Native American Studies Center, died Sunday in Columbia after a heart attack. He was 57.
    Goins was a well-known and outspoken social activist, artist, writer, singer-songwriter and performer. He had been in Columbia attending the Native American Film Festival, which he founded there 20 years ago.
    “He wanted to speak for all of the unspoken people who didn’t think they had voices,” said Elsie Goins, his mother. “He was that voice for many people….

  • Steven Puckett named principal of Panhandle’s new elementary

    Steven Puckett, who got his first principal’s job when Harrisburg Elementary opened three years ago, will do a repeat performance at Lancaster County’s next new school – the Panhandle elementary that will open in fall 2018.
    The Lancaster County school board voted 6-0 Tuesday night to make Puckett principal of the new facility, which doesn’t yet have a name. He will start the job Jan. 3.

  • Press 1 button and lock down a whole school

    Locking down a school to protect it from outside intrusion took nearly 10 minutes using the Lancaster County School District’s old technology.
    Someone had to run to each exterior door and manually click an electronic key fob.
    Now, a whole-school lockdown takes only a split second. One-button systems are part of $1.7 million in safety-lock upgrades that will be completed throughout the district by next fall. They’re among the $199 million in construction and technology projects funded by last year’s bond vote.

  • Bus-driver shortage causing long delays

    The Lancaster County School District is experiencing its worst bus-driver shortage in 25 years, and the resulting double routes are causing some students to arrive home 45 minutes later than normal.
    Transportation Director Bryan Vaughn said he believes the problem stems from the split-shift schedule and the tough requirements for becoming a bus driver.
    “I don’t think the general public understands what it takes to be a bus driver,” Vaughn said.

  • Committee picks color scheme for new Panhandle elementary

    “Motherland” green, “Lasting Thoughts” blue and “Violet Crush” lavender are a few of the colors that will flow through the new elementary school in the Panhandle.
    The Lancaster County school board voted unanimously on the colors during Tuesday night’s meeting after the palette was chosen by a committee of parents, a teacher, interior designer and the school district’s architect.

  • AJ homecoming candidates double fundraising for KARE

    Andrew Jackson High’s homecoming queen nominees outdid themselves this year, raising $29,000 for Kershaw Area Community Resource Exchange (KARE).
    During halftime at Friday’s football game, the eight nominees presented a check to KARE staff for more than double the amount raised in previous years. The nonprofit provides crisis assistance, food, home repairs, a retail discount store and partnerships with local agencies.

  • McDonald Green: The school of animals

    Students weren’t the only ones riding McDonald Green Elementary’s bus 38 to school Tuesday morning.

    In one of the seats, a four-week-old kitten rode with three brothers who rescued him.

    Needless to say, it was the first time a kitten rode the bus to McDonald Green.

    Brothers Jamyjhae, 11, Ja’Ontae, 10, and Larry Ingram, 9, found the orange kitten in their yard near their pit bull, and they wanted to keep him safe.

    “You can’t let the dog eat it,” Ja’Ontae said.

  • Parking changes coming for both AJ schools

    The 186 parking spots in front of Andrew Jackson High are finding a new home because a multipurpose building is moving in.
    The land along U.S. 521 is being cleared to make 432 new parking spots.
    Lancaster County School District is using existing school property and 2.8 acres that was purchased for the new lot.
    “They’re still doing land-clearing and starting on some grading soon,” said David Small, LCSD facilities director. “It’s on schedule.”