Two proposals Charleston Co. Schools considering costs more than $30 million

Published: Jan. 27, 2022 at 2:55 PM EST|Updated: Jan. 27, 2022 at 8:01 PM EST
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CHARLESTON COUNTY, S.C. (WCSC) - We now have a better look at some of the most expensive ESSER III proposals the Charleston County School District is considering. There are two proposals costing more than $30 million.

One of those proposals is the controversial Reimagine Schools from the Coastal Community Foundation and the other comes from the Charity Foundation.

The Charity Foundation is associated with Charity Missionary Baptist Church in North Charleston. The organization’s website says their community partners include CCSD and CCF among others. The Charity Foundation has not responded to requests for more information about their $30+ million proposal.

The next tier of organizations has been more forthcoming with their plans. There are eight organizations looking for more than $1 million in ESSER III funds.

There are two proposals costing more than $30 million. One of those proposals is the...
There are two proposals costing more than $30 million. One of those proposals is the controversial Reimagine Schools from the Coastal Community Foundation and the other comes from the Charity Foundation.(Provided)

Among other things, the Community Resource Center currently operates a number of routine food give aways. Louis Smith with the organization says they are requesting $6 million to stop the school to prison pipeline. He says the money would be used to curate after school programs to help struggling students with schoolwork and provide them with regular meals.

Wings for Kids is requesting $4 million dollars over three years to expand their current after school programs to new schools. Right now, the group provides social-emotional programing at Chicora Elementary School and would hope to expand those after school programs to three more elementary schools.

CEO Bridget Laird says they are perfectly tailored to meet student needs exacerbated by the pandemic.

“You go to school to get your head smarts and you go to Wings to get your heart smarts,” Laird said. “It’s things like how to make good decisions, how to build healthy relationships, how to behave well and we’ve wrapped that into a traditional after school program.”

They also provide in-school services like professional development and curriculum coaching at four to six different schools currently. They would expand that to 50 schools with ESSER Funding.

The Boys and Girls Club of the Crescent Region is another organization looking to expand its partnership with the school district. The organization operates the BE GREAT Academy at Jerry Zucker Middle School and Northwoods Middle School. The academy is the club’s after school, before school and summer camp program that goes by the name BEYOND.

President and CEO Carter Clark says they want to expand to as many schools as possible but says their budget is flexible. He estimates operating BE GREAT Academy costs between $75,000 and $100,000 per school. With 16 middle schools in the district, it would cost between $1.2 and $1.4 million.

Finally, the Lincoln Regional Center is requesting $5 million dollars over three years to provide programs predominately geared at bridging cultural divides that hinder learning.

The other four organizations have not returned a request for comment. The school district has not made any of the proposals public yet.

These are the proposals requesting the largest amounts of money, but there is a total of 71 altogether. The names of each can be found here.

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