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Columbia County Alternative School could be moved to Evans next year

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Columbia County school officials are considering moving the county’s alternative school next year to a vacant elementary school.

“The school that the alternative school is residing in now has to be torn down,” said Superintendent Charles Nagle at Tuesday’s school board meeting. “We’re going to have to make a decision on where to put those students.”

Nagle wants to move the alternative school to the Evans Elementary School campus for the 2013-2014 school year. The elementary school will be unoccupied next year. Its pupils have been rezoned to Martinez Elementary School and the new Evans Elementary School.

The system has the money to demolish the old building but not another building project, Nagle said.

The alternative school, currently in an old building at 112 Ford Ave. in Grovetown, has about 100 students and 12 faculty members.

By moving to the old Evans Elementary campus, students will have access to a media center, computer lab and gym, Nagle said.

The biggest cost associated with the move would be updating the school’s security system, a mandatory requirement for relocating any middle or high school, he said.

Two buses will transport students and only a handful of them drive to school, said alternative school Principal Ja’net Bishop.

“The impact on traffic will be miniscule if any,” she said.

Board members will vote on the issue at their Dec. 11 meeting.

Also Tuesday, the board approved 3-2 a middle school rezoning affecting 350 pupils at Columbia, Evans, Grovetown and Greenbrier Middle schools. Trustees Kristi Baker and Mike Sleeper opposed the decision.

The rezoning, in advance of a larger Columbia Middle School, will relieve overcrowding at Grovetown Middle School, but push Evans Middle School’s population above capacity by about 130 pupils. However, 12 additional classrooms will be built at Evans Middle before next school year begins.


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