West Ashley schools committee to reveal priorities Wednesday

West Ashley schools committee to reveal priorities Wednesday
May 21 16:46 2019 Print This Article

The West Ashley schools Mission Critical Action (MCA) team will announce the priorities it will recommend to the Charleston County School Board at a community meeting Wednesday from 6:30 to 8 pm at West Ashley High School. More than 70 school advocates shared their priorities with the MCA team on April 22. The MCA team also met with West Ashley teachers and principals in April. The team was facilitated by Anton Gunn, Chief Diversity officer for MUSC, and Big Brothers and Big Sisters of the Lowcountry President Merridith Crowe.

One of the priorities recommended by the Charleston County School District (CCSD) to the West Ashley MCA team was combining C.E. Williams and West Ashley Advanced Studies Magnet middle schools, which have a combined 1250 students. That recommendation was largely rejected by those who participated in the April 22 meeting. Many of the participants even suggested that the school district consider including a new middle school in its 2020 school construction sales tax referendum. If West Ashley were a city, it would be the 5th largest in South Carolina and has thousands of additional housing units in the works.

Other recommendations addressed in April included offering more teacher training for the faculties serving high-poverty students and sharing best learning practices being used at Orange Grove Charter School and Ashley River Creative Arts Elementary with other schools. Orange Grove received a record-high 1500 applications for the 2019-2020 school year for grades K-8, including 449 for the 100 spots available for the incoming kindergarten class. Ashley River Creative Arts Elementary is CCSD partial magnet school open to all elementary students in the Constituent District 10 attendance area in West Ashley. It uses an arts infusion teaching method across all subject areas and was recently rated the 7th best elementary school in South Carolina.