Education

Education Notebook | Horry County Schools approves use of modular classrooms to relieve overcrowding

The Board of Education gave preliminary approval on Tuesday to a $400,000 lease for several new modular classrooms at three area schools.
The Board of Education gave preliminary approval on Tuesday to a $400,000 lease for several new modular classrooms at three area schools. jblackmon@thesunnews.com

Temporary modular classrooms are on their way to three Horry County schools to ease overcrowding until several new schools are built.

The Board of Education gave preliminary approval on Tuesday to a $400,000 lease for several new modular classrooms at the three schools. The temporary classrooms are expected to be in place by August at Burgess Elementary, Aynor Elementary and Myrtle Beach Primary schools.

Horry County Schools already has about 158 portables, but many of those cannot be moved to new locations because of codes put in place after they were purchased, according to Mark Wolfe, executive director of facilities.

Leasing classrooms is the best option for the county, Wolfe said, since the district doesn’t have to maintain them. Part of the $400,000 first-year fee goes toward installation of the classrooms, which means costs will be lower over the next few years, Wolfe said

“As populations change, or as new schools come on line, then we can replace them so we don’t have to own them or maintain them,” Wolfe said.

The classrooms offer security and entry control, centralized hallways and flexibility to create up to eight classrooms in a single building. The lease provides options for indoor restrooms – best for younger grades – or group restrooms for higher grades as required, Wolfe said.

Stability was also a key factor in choosing the modular classes.

“Once they’re put together, they really stay that way until removed,” Wolfe said.

The district placed the lease up for bids and chose the least expensive option, Wolfe said.

Fourth annual Paddle Fest on the way

The Tara Hall Home for Boys will host their fourth annual Paddle Fest fundraiser June 20 to raise money for the school’s general operations.

The home is an accredited, long-term residential home and school that accepts neglected, troubled and abused boys.

Paddling participants can register at 7 a.m. and launch starts at 7:30 a.m. on the Mingo Creek. At 8 a.m. Tara Hall will open up the campus for non-paddlers. Paddlers can register online at www.tarahall.org before the event. Paddling should take two to three hours.

For non-paddlers, Tara Hall will offer live music by local groups, a kids barrel race for children ages 8-12, kayak races and pileau dinner. The school is also giving away two kayaks to two registered paddlers.

“This is truly going to be a great event,” said Patsy Morris, Tara Hall assistant director. “We’re very grateful for the positive response we’ve already gained through last year’s, and again this year’s, sponsorships from the communities surrounding Tara Hall.”

The first Paddle Fest reeled in 115 paddlers, which increased to 275 in 2013 and 414 last year. River Rats Canoe Rentals and Swamp Fox Kayak Rentals will offer limited kayak and canoe rentals for an additional $10.

The fee for adult paddlers is $30, and the price for children 8 to 16 is $15. The fee includes paddle trip, a meal and a T-shirt.

Children ages 4 to 7 are free with an adult. Non-paddlers must pay a gate fee of $10, which includes a meal.

“We want everyone to come out and enjoy themselves and remember that they are helping improve the lives of the boys and giving them a second chance,” Morris said.

Contact CLAIRE BYUN at 626-0381 and follow her on Twitter @Claire_TSN.

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