By Emily Smith
This August, our community is grateful to be able to look forward to a new, and this year, more familiar school year. As it stands now, Horry County schools will welcome their students back in person on August 17.
Although schools will resume face-to-face instruction five days a week for students, there will still be protocols in place to encourage safe and healthy environments. Horry County will enforce guidelines according to the CDC and SCDHEC.
As of July 6, masks are not required in buildings nor on buses. Over the summer, other measures have been decided upon to keep the spread of all contagious diseases as contained as possible during the school year. This includes but is not limited to some modifying of school facilities for extra space and improved ventilation systems. Schools will continue to either stagger or extend meal service times, and more water bottle filling-stations have been installed.
To promote cleanliness and decrease the chance of germs spreading, faculty will be incorporating age-appropriate activities to teach students the importance of hygiene and foster healthy habits. Throughout school hours, staff will be disinfecting high-traffic areas, and after all students leave for the day, classrooms and additional common areas will be thoroughly cleaned.
On top of resuming typical classroom teaching and implementing the new safety protocols, Horry County’s school system is utilizing data from the past school year to assess students’ academic growth and identify the areas in which the education system can make improvements in curriculum as well as overall student support.
They are working on enhancing the resources available for students learning English as a second language as well as students with disabilities. Horry County schools are also placing a greater emphasis on mental, emotional, and physical health. Ultimately, their goal is to meet the needs of all students, and ensure they are receiving the best education and as much support as possible.
For the Carolina Forest area of Horry County, the start of the school year will test the efficacy of this neighborhood’s newly-widened boulevard. Despite delays, construction was completed at the end of July, although crews will still be finishing the multi-use path through September.
Remaining in the know is a vital part of helping the community grow, and keeping everyone staying safe and healthy. Visit www.horrycountyschools.net to read more about the new plans put in place by Horry County schools, as well as to stay up-to-date about potential changes and revisions. Bus routes and event calendars are also located on the webpage.