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Education: Charter school may add a class

By Charles Swenson
Coastal Observer

A lottery will be held next week to select fourth- and fifth-grade students for Coastal Montessori Charter School, but the board says it may also add another class for those grades.

The school will open in August in a vacant wing of Waccamaw Middle School at Pawleys Island. It plans to have 120 students in grades one through six. There were 150 applications for enrollment received by the Dec. 15 deadline.

The charter school will hold a lotter Jan. 5 at 10 a.m. in the Waccamaw Library to select students for fourth and fifth grades. Robert Sheehan, provost of Coastal Carolina University, and Mary Carmichael, director of the Public Charter School Alliance, will help with the drawing.

But the school announced Saturday that it will consider adding a class to accommodate students who end up on the waiting list in fourth and fifth grades.

Organizers planned to have two lower elementary classes, each with eight students from first, second and third grades. They planned one upper elementary class of fourth-, fifth- and sixth-graders. The mixed-age classes are among the features of Montessori schools.

The charter school board will present the idea for a second upper elementary class to the Georgetown County Board of Education next week. Charter schools receive public funds, but have their own governing boards. Coastal Montessori Charter School is sponsored by the county school district.

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