Columbia County school leaders announce 10-year plan

Published: Aug. 25, 2022 at 6:44 PM EDT
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EVANS, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - The Columbia County School District says they are already planning for years down the line.

This week they announced their 10-year plan, focusing on improvements and renovations to schools.

It used to be a five-year plan, but they expanded it so they can get more input from parents and resources to create the vision.

A year and a half ago, the district asked questions to the parents, students, and other members of the community in order to figure out what they were looking to see done with schools.

Over the past eight months, the district took that information to draft the plan they have now.

Each school district in Georgia have five-year plans, but with the growth of over 4,000 students in the last 10 years, Columbia County wanted more time.

“Let’s expand this a little longer so we can talk with the community about what the needs are, and what’s reasonable about actually making these things happen. And it really is reasonable to do this and about 10 years,” said Columbia County Superintendent, Dr. Steve Flynt.

The county’s growth is starting to slow down, which makes the county want to make adjustments.

“And at this point in time, even though we’re continuing to grow, we’re seeing a little bit of a lull in the speed of that growth. And so, now’s the time when we really need to look at revamping some of these older facilities,” said Flynt.

The three oldest facilities in the district, Evans, Lakeside, and Harlem High Schools will look to get additions and renovations.

These high schools are also exceeding their instructional capacity with Lakeside High School having over 400 more students than the capacity.

Even with increased capacity, the county isn’t in any rush.

“So even though this is something we need to do right now, we need to take enough time to make a well-developed plan with anyone with any of these additions,” he said.

The project once approved will be done in phases, with the initial phases starting in the next couple of months.

The Columbia County School District will be hosting its first public meeting on Monday at Evans High School, Tuesday at Greenbrier, and Wednesday at Grovetown. All of those will be held at 6 p.m.