The State Board of Education recently approved a plan to send almost $56 million to 48 high-poverty school districts to address longstanding facility needs.
While these districts are undoubtedly grateful for the help and will spend these funds effectively, this money is a drop in the bucket compared to their actual needs due to many years of state neglect.
A new elementary school can cost in excess of $20 million. A comprehensive building renovation can cost $10 million or more. Yet this $56 million is to be stretched across 48 districts.
A new high school would eat up the entire $56 million, and probably more.
Given that the state Supreme Court has essentially set aside the Abbeville disparity lawsuit, I wonder how much more help these districts will get with facilities in the future. There needs to be a long-term plan to address the real educational disparities that exist in our state.
There certainly isn’t one now.
Frank E. Morgan
Kershaw County School Superintendent