New group launches to address Charleston County school issues
A downtown high school's foundation has spawned a new citizens group dedicated to addressing concerns in Charleston County schools.
The Coalition of Citizens for Schools that Work is an outgrowth of the Burke High School Foundation, which launched a project addressing the future of the downtown school. The project was expanded to include all areas of the county after foundation leaders received input from residents across the district who had concerns.
Barbara Dilligard, president of the Burke High School Foundation, is the coalition's interim leader. Dilligard was a former deputy superintendent in the school district.
She announced the group to the Charleston County School Board at Monday night's meeting, and some of its supporters also spoke during the public comment portion.
The group is made up of representatives from neighborhood, community and alumni associations, foundations, civic groups and constituent school boards.
The group initially has identified four key issues for the school district to address: Conducting real community engagement before considering major changes at schools; requiring plans to be based on facts, and reporting results annually; discontinuing practices that resegregate schools; and employing teachers who have high expectations for all students.
“All children can learn at high levels and that's what we want to see,” Dilligard said. “We want equity and access and equality.”
The coalition is working to create a website. Until then, check the Burke High Foundation's at burkehighfoundation.org.