Sumter School Board may vote Monday on reopening of Mayewood Middle School

Trustees to first hear costs associated with potential change

BY BRUCE MILLS
bruce@theitem.com
Posted 2/8/19

The potential reopening of Mayewood Middle School will be discussed and possibly decided on at the Sumter School District Board of Trustees' meeting on Monday.

After a motion following executive session at its last regularly scheduled meeting on …

This item is available in full to subscribers

Sumter School Board may vote Monday on reopening of Mayewood Middle School

Trustees to first hear costs associated with potential change

Posted

The potential reopening of Mayewood Middle School will be discussed and possibly decided on at the Sumter School District Board of Trustees' meeting on Monday.

After a motion following executive session at its last regularly scheduled meeting on Jan. 28, the full board voted 6-2 with one abstention to reopen Mayewood for next school year after it voted to close it just last school year. However, that vote was considered illegal by legal counsel for the South Carolina Press Association - according to state Freedom of Information Act laws - because the motion was neither on the meeting agenda nor amended and added to it.

Now, the board will revisit the issue but first hear a discussion of costs associated with reopening the middle school in the rural eastern portion of the county to include moving, facilities and programs, according to the agenda distributed Thursday by a district spokeswoman.

Just before receiving that information, outside consultants will provide a facilities study update to include a report on Mayewood's campus, which was omitted from the consultants' presentation to the full board last month. A report on F.J. DeLaine Elementary School in Wedgefield, also closed last year and omitted from the original facilities study presentation, will also be made, the agenda states.

Cumming Corp., based out of Columbia, was the lead consultant in the facilities assessment study along with two smaller firms.

The study evaluated the district's schools and ancillary buildings for current renovation needs and what those needs are projected to be in five years if no action is taken now, given expiring systems - such as electrical, roofing and heating/air conditioning.

After hearing those two items, the full board has the option to vote on reopening Mayewood for 2019-20. There will be no executive session to discuss the matter, according to the agenda.

Canty, who was one of two trustees last week to vote against reopening Mayewood, said he anticipates the full board will vote on the matter at the meeting. He said he is hopeful the board will act deliberately based on the information its receives on Monday.

"I'm prayerfully optimistic that we are a deliberate people," Canty said, "and if we get the right information, there may be some change of heart or some desire for additional information before a vote is taken to consider all the ramifications."

Monday's meeting will be at Furman Middle School, 3400 Bethel Church Road, and will begin at 6 p.m. Like all board-related meetings, it is open to the public, and public participation is listed on the agenda.

PULLOUT BOX

Want to go?

What: Sumter School Board meeting

When: Monday, 6 p.m.

Where: Furman Middle School, 3400 Bethel Church Road