School Board to consider expanding thematic programs for elementary, middle schools | Education

The Aiken County Board of Education will consider expansion of thematic programs for Aiken County Public School District elementary and middle schools at its regular meeting Tuesday.

The meeting will be at 7 p.m. at the district office at 1000 Brookhaven Drive.

The expanded thematic offerings would be world language immersion programs at Belvedere, Clearwater and Millbrook elementary schools, a math focus at North Augusta Middle, a science focus at Paul Knox Middle School and the Cambridge Lower Secondary program at Schofield Middle, according to the meeting’s agenda.

If approved, the new thematic programs would begin in the 2019-20 school year.

The district began thematic programs at its seven high schools in 2016-17. In August 2018, the Aiken Scholars Academy opened on the campus at USC Aiken. The high school allows selected students to earn college credits during their junior and senior years.

In other business, the board will hear updates on projects as follows:

• The new Aiken Intermediate School for all sixth graders in Area 1, which is scheduled to open for the 2019-20 school year

• Construction status on the Phase 2B addition at North Augusta High

• Construction status on the Phase 2B addition at Aiken High

• Construction status on the Phase 2 addition at Ridge Spring-Monetta High/Middle School.


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During special orders of business, Dr. Gary Senn, the director of the Ruth Patrick Science Education Center at USCA, will present the Spirit of Ruth Patrick Awards.

During public participation, a resident has asked to talk about the bathrooms at Midland Valley High School.

The superintendent’s update will be a presentation on “Post-Secondary Outcomes: College Enrollment Trends for ACPSD Graduates.”

In other business, the board will consider items as follows:

• A donation of $2,000 to the Aiken County Career and Technology Center from the Western Carolina State Fair to support the criminal justice program

• An S.C. School Boards Insurance Trust Risk Control Grant grant application of $55,088.61 submitted by the Business Services Department to support risk management objectives

• The consideration of items to be declared surplus, including electrical equipment and an activities bus

• A pilot program for lawn maintenance services in Area 1; the annual cost would be $168,600 and would be funded by unfilled vacancies

• The submission of an Early Head Start Grant to serve 88 children ages birth to 3 years in a center-based program option to encompass full day, five days per week and 46 weeks per year; the sites would be in Aiken, Graniteville, Gloverville and Wagener.

Larry Wood covers education for the Aiken Standard.

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