WEST ASHLEY, S.C. (WCBD) – The Charleston County School District (CCSD) has decided to move forward with the decision to merge West Ashley and C.E. Williams Middle Schools. However, in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the merger will proceed differently than originally planned, with students split between two campuses.
Sixth graders from both schools will be at the West Ashley Middle School campus, while seventh and eighth graders will be at the new C.E. Williams campus.
CCSD said that the decision was made with “a variety of logistical and developmental concerns” in mind, “many of them related to the current pandemic.”
Officials felt that spreading the students out among the two campuses would allow “a significant increase in the amount of instructional space for smaller groups of students on both campuses.”
Additionally, having only sixth graders on the West Ashley Middle School campus will enable educators to “more adequately address the heightened social, emotional, and developmental needs” of those transitioning into middle school. CCSD expects many of the needs to be “related to unintended learning gaps created by COVID-19’s extended school closure.”
Principals Kevin Smith and Maite Porter said that they believe this is the most viable option to “ensure the best possible educational experience for our students.”