2 schools will add portables

The opening of Stallings Island Middle School in August should eliminate the need for portable classrooms in Columbia County's middle schools in 2008-09.


However, at least two county elementary schools -- Cedar Ridge and Lewiston -- will receive portables next year.

These likely will be moved from Riverside Middle School, which has 12 portables. But a $5,000 price tag to move one portable will keep the remaining units at Riverside, said school Superintendent Charles Nagle.

"They're just going to have to be the host until we do move them to keep from having to pay to move them twice," he said.

Cedar Ridge will add two portables. The school, which was built to capacity with 51 classrooms, opened in August.

"We are adding a first-grade class and a second-grade class, and we want to keep them in the building," Principal Sarah Walls said.

She said the portables will be used for small group instruction for pupils who need additional help with reading and math.

"We will not have to put regular classes in there unless we have a bursting enrollment at the first of the year that we don't anticipate," Dr. Walls said.

Lewiston Elementary, where a 12-classroom addition was completed last summer, already has two portables on site. Neither was used this year, Principal Mike Doolittle said.

He said the third portable is being added "on a proactive basis with the projected growth that we may have."

He also said the portable classrooms would be used for reading and math instruction for pupils in early intervention programs.

Administrators thought Greenbrier and Evans high schools might need another portable next year, but Mr. Nagle said that no longer is the case.

He said the school system could move additional portables next year if necessary to accommodate student population growth.

"We're not going to have people sitting out in the football field having class," Mr. Nagle said.

Reach Betsy Gilliland at (706) 868-1222, ext. 113, or betsy.gilliland@augustachronicle.com