Myrtle Beach church hands out school supplies, hoping to help local students prepare

Church leader Portia Thomas shifts through school supplies during a drive at Sandy Grove...
Church leader Portia Thomas shifts through school supplies during a drive at Sandy Grove Missionary Baptist Church in Myrtle Beach.(WMBF News)
Updated: Aug. 30, 2020 at 12:17 PM EDT
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MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - For many students and families back to school is already a mix of nerves and excitement.

This year, those feelings are amplified.

Church members at the Sandy Grove Missionary Baptist Church in Myrtle Beach spent Saturday making sure no matter how kids go back, they go back prepared.

“They got crayons, papers, masks,” said Portia Thomas, a leader of the church, as she shifted through supplies in a backpack, ready to be handed out to families and students. “Even if they’re home or at school; paper, pencils, we’d rather give than for them not to have anything.”

Overall, the church said they were ready to serve at least 300 children during the school supply drive.

And parents said they were grateful.

“It’s a good thing that they’re doing for the kids you know, some parents don’t have it like that to get things,” said one parent picking up a backpack for each of her two children.

On Monday a new report from DHEC will be released, showing current COVID-19 disease spread levels across counties. There are three possibilities for school officials to consider based on DHEC’s data:

  • If disease spread is high in Horry County, children will learn from home.
  • If disease spread is deemed to be medium, a hybrid model will be put in place where students are in the classroom some days out of the week.
  • If DHEC said disease spread is low, then students will be in a classroom face-to-face five days a week.

Other districts in the Grand Strand and Pee Dee are facing similar decisions.

Last week, the Darlington County School District decided to start the school year off virtually for the first two weeks. The Georgetown County School District is also set to reopen remotely on Sept. 8, and then hoping to transition into a hybrid model.

No matter how students learn this year, Thomas said she wants them to be prepared.

“Just because of COVID we don’t want them to not be productive,” she said. “There’s great academic children here in the community.”

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