Horry County Schools looks for more teachers, deals with growth throughout district

Published: Aug. 23, 2022 at 6:56 AM EDT|Updated: Aug. 23, 2022 at 8:35 AM EDT
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HORRY COUNTY, S.C. (WMBF) - The Horry County school district is welcoming more than 300 new teachers this school year but is also still looking to fill 72 open teaching positions.

Currently, 98% of teaching jobs in Horry County are covered, and the district said the other 2% of open positions are mainly at the middle and high school levels.

The district is looking to recruit more teachers, specifically in the math and science fields.

Right now, the district is dealing with open classes by either paying other teachers to cover them during their planning period or having substitute teachers take over until the positions are filled.

Lisa Bourcier, Horry County School District Director of Strategic Communications, said turnover like this is normal, especially after the last few years.

“We have seen that increase a little bit because of COVID. We have had several teachers that have retired out of the profession and some that maybe even moved out of the district to go back to family in another state and some are looking to even get out of the profession as a whole,” said Bourcier.

The school district isn’t only looking for teachers but room to expand.

Nearly 46,000 students are enrolled in the Horry County school district and the district is looking for ways to make room for more students.

Bourcier said 20% of students in the school district live in the Carolina Forest area, but they are seeing growth throughout the entire district.

“You can see it every day driving down the street. All new developments coming up so that does have an impact on a school system. We’re seeing a tremendous amount of growth in North Myrtle Beach and on the South Strand and even in the Conway area so it’s really impacting the entire district,” said Bourcier.

There are a few ways the district is dealing with the growth.

First, the district is adding another 36 modular classrooms between five schools: North Myrtle Beach High, Carolina Forest High, Carolina Forest Elementary, River Oaks Elementary and Waccamaw Elementary.

The modular classrooms are separate from the school and can have multiple classrooms within the building.

The school district already owns 88 modular classrooms throughout the district.

The district also bought two sites in the Carolina Forest area for potential new elementary schools.

The first site is located off Carolina Forest Boulevard near the Carolina Forest Recreation Center, and the other site is located off Ronald McNair Boulevard in the River Oaks area.

It’s an anticipated cost of $4-5 million for the full design and planning of both new elementary schools.

Bourcier said it will take another year or two to decide the design and construction of the new schools.