SC for Ed data shows districts still looking for over 1,000 teachers before school year

Education leaders said that many teachers are retiring or quitting, but there aren’t enough replacements to meet the demand, leaving some districts may be faced with more shortages than ever before.

  SC education leaders discuss survey results regarding teachers’ COVID experiences

  Community effort needed to keep Lexington One school doors open

  SC school districts work to finalize meal programs

  Fight over private school grants could be heading to the SC Supreme Court

  Gilbert Elementary prepares to reopen with new learning environment amidst pandemic

Free meals for children available from Columbia Parks and Recreation Aug. 10 to 28

Continued Coverage

  SC bus driver expresses COVID-19 concerns: “We’re the first to come in contact with students”

  ‘Pathways from Prison’ initiative at Claflin University aims to change lives of inmates

The Citadel reports 3 new COVID-19 cases

  Lawmakers, health officials seek to bridge the broadband internet gap in SC

Spartanburg County School District confirms teacher was killed in Alaska plane crash

Richland Two extends survey deadline for instruction model selection

  Richland One reopening plan approved among 35 others; state requires everyone wear masks in public schools

Richland One’s approval comes with a caveat.

FULL LIST: School reopening plans for Midlands districts

Many of these plans still have to be approved by the Department of Education.

SC for ED calls mandate to include in-person option in reopening plans ‘a purely political move’

According to the statement, Spearman sent out a memo to school districts on July 17 requiring school reopening plans to include an in-person option for all students to receive instruction at schools.

  South Carolina is testing out a new way to get lessons to students without internet access

Datacasting uses SCETV’s signal. If you receive their channel via an antenna, you can receive this content, officials said.

  Richland One teachers hold ‘Motor March’ to encourage the district to stick firmly to virtual plan

Richland One asks parents to fill out meal survey for upcoming school year

25 more school district reopening plans approved by Dept. of Education

  S.C. receives $15M Rethink K-12 Education grant

  Sumter School District recovers from fiscal emergency, ready to begin school year virtually

  Hearing held regarding funds set to be allocated from emergency fund for private school tuition

Charleston County parents given 5 days to choose virtual or in-person

Charleston County parents are set to get an enrollment form Wednesday that will ask them to choose a virtual or in-person option for their child for the fall.

Richland 2 votes to approve Aug. 31 start date for students

The decision comes after board members voted to approve a revised calendar during a meeting on Tuesday.

  Money for SAFE grants could remain frozen after Wednesday hearing

The grants are meant to help pay for private school tuition for low-income students, but the funds hang in limbo right now after the judge signed a temporary restraining order on the money last week.

  SC school districts starting the school year virtually could be required to offer in-person option

Each school plans to move to in-person learning over time, but that letter from the Department of Education states that in-person, even a hybrid or blended model, must be an option in order to be approved.

Midlands Tech to offer 4 options for students to take courses in the fall

Midlands Tech will provide traditional on-campus instruction, online classes, virtual courses, and hybrid classes.

Horry County, Florence School District 2 among 8 school districts yet to submit reopening plans

Eight out of 85 school districts in South Carolina have not submitted a finalized reopening plan as of Tuesday, according to an updated list from the state Department of Education.

Kershaw Co. School District now hiring bus drivers, assistants, substitute food service employees

The Kershaw County School District are now looking to hire school bus drivers, bus assistants, and substitute food service employees for the upcoming school year.

  ‘Motor March’: SC For Ed host protest to continue virtual learning amidst COVID-19 outbreak

“We shouldn’t have to put our lives on the line to be teachers,” said Nozsa Tinsley, a teacher at Center Inquiry School. “We love what we do. But, we also love our families, and we want to go home to them.”

State superintendent approves Saluda County Schools’ reopening plan among 5 other districts

Spearman outlined the four criteria districts must meet to have their plans approved.

Richland Library to launch Wi-Fi hotspot initiative

The hotspots will be given to 26 resident communities across Richland County.

Lowcountry business making desk dividers to help schools open

With schools scrambling to open in a few weeks, one family-owned company in Summerville has transitioned from prototype manufacturing to safety-glass for desks.

SC school district spending $6 million on plexiglass, contact tracing, safety measures

The Charleston County School District is preparing to reopen its classrooms this fall, so workers are now implementing millions of dollars worth of safety measures before any teachers or students walk through the door.

  LR5 community members divided on district’s plan to reopen for the fall

Some parents are asking for a full return to in-person classes five days a week, while others say it’s just not safe enough right now.

SC State hosts virtual town hall to discuss reopening plans

Those present for the meeting include the university’s president James Clark, as well as its student government president Javonni Ayers.

Richland One extends summer meal program due to school start date change

Officials have decided to continue the program after the district’s start date for the 2020-21 academic year was moved back to August 31.

SC State to reopen virtually in the fall

The university will begin classes in the fall semester remotely starting August 10.

  Districts prepare quarantine, contact tracing procedures to reopen schools

A few districts, such as Richland Two and Lexington One, said that every positive case creates a domino effect in schools because every student who tests positive will have to quarantine for at least 10 days.

LR5 discusses school reopening plans as SC for ED stages protest

LR5 previously said it would have an in-person option and virtual option for students when school started.

  SC Dept. of Ed to require all students, drivers to wear masks on buses

The Department of Education says these changes are to keep both students and teachers safe.

Spearman, Bell urge people to do their part to stop the spread of COVID-19

Dr. Linda Bell said wearing a mask is the most effective intervention we have to prevent more coronavirus cases.

Spokesperson for Roman Catholic Diocese of Charleston issues statement on SAFE Grants temporary restraining order

On Monday, Gov. Henry McMaster announced this program that would provide grants of up to $6,500 to low- and middle income South Carolina families for use at private schools across the state.

WIS hosts Back-to-School Digital Town Hall with Dr. Linda Bell, education advocates

Have a question? Chime in on the WIS News Facebook page!

  State superintendent says DOE plans on approving school district reopening plans soon

As of Wednesday morning, they have not approved any school district plans.

UofSC to mandate COVID-19 testing for students living in dorms

Prior to arriving on campus, students must upload proof of their COVID-19 testing results to the Student Health Center’s My Health Space portal.

Clemson University will begin the fall semester online

Clemson University will begin the fall semester online and will delay in-person instruction until Sept. 21.

Judge temporarily blocks McMaster’s plan to provide $32M in private school scholarships

Gov. Henry McMaster announced the Safe Access to Flexible Education (SAFE) Grants on Monday, giving $32 million in emergency funding to the school-choice program.

At least 100k SC households to receive mobile hotspots, monthly internet service for students

Priority is being given to households in counties that contain a school district that has been defined by the South Carolina Department of Education as having a poverty rate greater than or equal to 86%.

  11,000 kids, teens tested positive for coronavirus

With COVID-19 positive cases surging in South Carolina, many parents are concerned about sending their children back into a classroom in the coming months.

Richland One Board announces e-learning for Phase 1 of reopening

The reopening plan gives two options. One option is a phase-in model in which there are three phases for high risk, medium risk, and low risk. The second option is an R1 Virtual School Model for the entire year.

New SC survey shows most support mask mandates, many share concerns about schools reopening

The poll was conducted earlier this month by Chernoff-Newman, a marketing firm based in Columbia.

  Richland Two to begin school year virtually, parents and teachers applaud

When students and teachers return to the classroom in Phase 2 and 3, the board will be implementing various safety precautions.

  Newberry Co. announces school reopening plans, some teachers push for virtual start

Parents will have the choice between a hybrid model or virtual instruction.

SC for Ed encourages school districts to go #VirtualUntilSafe through ‘Motor Marches’

SC for Ed will gather outside of two Midlands school district offices Tuesday as many districts continue finalizing reopening plans for this fall.

  SAFE grants receive mixed reaction from parents, teachers, administrators

Safe Access to Flexible Education GranGovernor McMaster said he plans to use up to $32 million of the Emergency Education Relief Fund, also known as GEER, for the new program.ts

Berkeley Co. School District requires parents to sign COVID waiver for in-person instruction

The Berkeley County School District is requiring parents to sign a waiver for their children to return to schools for in-person instruction during the coronavirus pandemic.

  Midlands school districts are not asking parents to sign waivers before sending students to school

The legality of a wavier like this is dubious, according to lawyers for two school districts.

Education advocacy groups, state lawmakers oppose use of GEER funds for private school scholarships

The Palmetto State Teachers Association and SC for ED were among the groups who issued statements on Monday sharing their disapproval of how the funds will be used.

  McMaster to use $32M in education relief funds for school-choice grants

The funds were granted to the state under the CARES Act.

LR5 announces in-person, virtual instruction options for students for upcoming year

The district has provided an in-person instruction option or a virtual instruction option for families to choose from to begin the 2020-21 school year.

Lexington Two to offer hybrid instruction, virtual academy for students for 2020-21 school year

Officials said the hybrid/blended plan also pairs with the Lexington Two Virtual Academy program, which is a full-time learning plan for 5K-12 students.

  School districts face deadline for fall plans with some saying they need more time

A Department of Education spokesperson said that 35 school districts requested extensions for submitting their plans.

  Kershaw County schools will let parents choose face-to-face or eCampus option

The district is prepared to make home visits to account for students.

  SC school districts have connected with about half of the students they haven’t heard from since March

Over the last few weeks, the state, school districts, Department of Social Services, and community partners have worked to connect with these students and families

Claflin among HBCUs in expanded partnership with Apple as part of tech hub program

The partnership, officials said, is designed to “create a multiplier effect, building capacity at the HBCUs that extends beyond the campus through partnerships with local K-12 schools, community partners, local governments, and other community stakeholders.”

  Fairfield County unveils unique approach to reopen schools

Fairfield County Superintendent Dr. J.R. Green understands the importance and value of face-to-face learning. Figuring out how to do so safely amid a pandemic is challenging.

  SC Association of School Nurses believes it’s too soon to return to in-person learning

While these nurses understand the need for in-person learning, they don’t think that should come at the expense of risking students’ and teachers’ safety.

  ‘I’m very nervous’: Parents react to whether they will send their kids back to school in the fall

Many parents said they're still unsure whether or not to send their kids back to school.

  ‘That’s unacceptable to me’: Sen. Hembree gives S.C. digital learning results ‘D-’ grade

Sen. Greg Hembree, chairman of the Senate Education Committee, says based on data, many students aren’t flourishing in digital learning environments and are losing a year’s worth of learning in math while at home.

  WIS hosts Back-to-School Digital Town Hall as debate over reopening intensifies

School leaders, advocates and a pediatrician will talk about what school may look like this fall for students and teachers.

  Top SC education advocacy groups all oppose governor’s push to reopen schools

The Palmetto State Teachers Association, SC for Ed, the South Carolina Education Association, the South Carolina School Boards Association, and the South Carolina Association of School Administrators each issued statements following the governor’s announcement Wednesday morning.

  ‘That’s a heavy lift’: Richland One superintendent reacts to SC governor’s call to reopen schools

If districts want to follow the governor's request to provide in-person learning five days a week at the start of school, many have to revamp their reopening plans.

  SC governor says virtual learning is ‘not as good’ as he pushes for schools to reopen 5 days a week

McMaster also suggested schools wait to open until Sept. 8.

SC state superintendent disagrees with governor on plan to reopen schools

Spearman says she will listen to school leaders and public health experts to make her decisions.

  Richland Two expects to begin school virtually, adjust as coronavirus cases come down

The plan isn’t final just yet, but officials are getting prepared.

  No ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach for SC charter, private schools

These institutions will make individual decisions on when and how to reopen.

Girl Scouts of South Carolina launching “Make New Friends” virtual event series

The COVID-19 pandemic and transition to virtual learning and activities have disrupted important educational milestones, particularly for children entering kindergarten this year.

  Annual back-to-school backpack giveaway won’t reach as many students because of COVID-19 concerns

The founder of an Aiken nonprofit says for-profit businesses aren’t the only ones hurting in this economy.

  S.C. superintendent: Decisions on reopening schools shouldn’t be made by ‘bureaucrats’ in DC

State Superintendent Molly Spearman said on Monday that the decision to reopen South Carolina schools will be not be swayed by pressure from the federal government.