New charter school in Berkeley Co. set to open in 2024

A new charter school is set to open its doors in Berkeley County next fall.
Published: May. 5, 2023 at 3:43 PM EDT|Updated: May. 5, 2023 at 4:42 PM EDT
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BERKELEY COUNTY, S.C. (WCSC) - A new charter school is set to open its doors in Berkeley County next fall.

It will be called Libertas Academy of Berkeley, which is also the same kind of charter school that’s planning to open in Colleton County. This school is affiliated with the Charter Institute of Erskine that authorizes charter schools across the state.

John Loveday, the executive director of Tutelage School Solutions, says bringing rural areas more opportunities for school choice is why they want to bring Libertas Academy to Berkeley County.

Tutelage School Solutions is a service provider that helps take charter schools all the way from initial concept to finalization. They are working with the Charter Institute at Erskine to open five Libertas Academies in the state.

The school’s curriculum will include teaching character development, wearing uniforms, having PE every day for all grades and no homework for elementary schoolers, all on top of traditional subjects. They plan to have at least 100 kids per grade in grades K-6 of their first year and then add seventh and eighth the following year.

Loveday says they also have goals to add a program for ages four through kindergarten because only 25% of kids start kindergarten academically ready. This program has not been finalized just yet.

“There are almost 100 public charter schools in South Carolina,” Loveday said. “So, we feel like folks in Berkeley County deserve the choice as well. And so, we’re simply going where there’s a perceived lack of choice.”

He says they have not picked an exact location just yet, but it will be in a rural area with no school like it around it at any capacity. He says they could be building an entirely new building or renovating one already standing. They hope to have this figured out by spring of next year.