Sumter School District to research, develop magnet school concept

BY BRUCE MILLS
bruce@theitem.com
Posted 11/16/17

In an effort to increase overall academic achievement and create more diverse opportunities for children in public schools, Sumter School District is looking into the possibility of creating a magnet school - or maybe even more than one.

With the …

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Sumter School District to research, develop magnet school concept

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In an effort to increase overall academic achievement and create more diverse opportunities for children in public schools, Sumter School District is looking into the possibility of creating a magnet school - or maybe even more than one.

With the unanimous approval of a curriculum committee motion by Sumter School District's Board of Trustees on Monday, Interim Superintendent Debbie Hamm will research and develop one or more magnet school proposals and a

general timeline for implementation by the end of this school year. She will present her findings to the board for consideration during the spring.

The board's relatively new Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment Committee came up with the idea to pursue a magnet school concept, said Bonnie Disney, committee chairwoman.

On Oct. 24, Sara Wheeler, current president of Magnet Schools of America and an employee with Lexington-Richland School District 5 in Columbia, gave a presentation to the committee. Wheeler is an associate of Hamm, who helped develop magnet school programs in her former district, Richland School District 2 in Columbia.

They said magnet schools can take many forms but have a specifically themed curriculum, such as music and the arts or science, technology, engineering and math.

Disney said Hamm, as part of her proposal, will research various federal funding sources and other grants that could be available to help start a program.