Cumback envisions growth at West Ashley High School

Cumback envisions growth at West Ashley High School
September 25 16:12 2019 Print This Article

West Ashley High School (WAHS) principal Ryan Cumback has a plan to relieve traffic congestion in the area – get more students to attend their neighborhood high school. After taking the helm on July 1, he persuaded nearly 100 students who had enrolled elsewhere to return to West Ashley. He told members of the West Ashley James Island Business Association (WAJIBA) Wednesday, “If we can get parents in the door, they’ll send their children to us.”

WAHS has a wide variety of course offerings, ranging from 31 college credit classes to skill-building classes for students who begin high school performing below grade level in English or math. The school also offers career programs in robotics, culinary arts, cosmetology, health sciences, and cybersecurity. Cumback expanded the school’s fine arts program and hired a full-time Athletic Director. He said, “We have something for everyone.”

The school is adding a career center in August 2021 that will add auto mechanics, welding, and broadcasting to existing career programs. Cumback told the business owners at WAJIBA that he is looking to add business partners and offer his students job-shadowing opportunities.

The enrollment at WAHS is approaching 1700 students with the capacity to expand to 2400. Large numbers of West Ashley students currently attend James Island Charter High School (188), Charleston County School of the Arts in North Charleston (177), and Charleston Math and Science Charter School on the peninsula. If Cumback can keep them in West Ashley, it could ease traffic congestion!