Getting educated on centerPublished 12:13am Friday, April 5, 2013
Meetings past came back to haunt Beaufort County Board of Education members this week when they met with county commissioners.
The meeting was a preamble to cobbling the next Beaufort County Schools budget. School-board members arranged the meeting to better gauge the intentions of commissioners. For example, would commissioners support renovating the Ed Tech Center or should long-term projects (and the campus) be abandoned?
“We need to know what level of commitment we have before making those decisions,” said BCS Superintendent Don Phipps.
Commissioner Al Klemm asked the school board to explain how the space would be used in the future, what the district would do if it did not have the center and how it would affect current programs.
Commissioners Stan Deatherage and Ed Booth said they favor of keeping the center.
Commissioner Hood Richardson reminded the school board that BCS had recommended condemning the building a few years ago. He said commissioners were told the center is in a dangerous neighborhood and would be too costly to renovate.
“The school didn’t need anything,” Richardson said.
He told the school board he would have a problem funding renovations to the center when there is a surplus of 2,000 seats in the school system.
The center has undergone its share of changes. There is plenty of life left in the building. The district started using the space for alternative classrooms and training teachers.
The school board should be commended for its wise use of space and for thinking about the future costs and uses of the Ed Tech Center.