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State says OK to strategic waiver application
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The state Department of Education has given its approval to the Effingham County School System’s strategic waiver application.

Superintendent Randy Shearouse said he and Travis Nesmith, the executive director for the system’s instruction and technology department were at the state Board of Education meeting when their members gave the OK.

“They pretty much said just keep doing what you’re doing in Effingham,” Shearouse said, “because the results were good. And there were about 20 other systems listening at the time.”

Effingham school board members adopted a strategic plan and chose to be a strategic waiver system earlier this year.

Shearouse also said work on the science, engineering, technology and math addition at the Effingham College and Career Academy is progressing, and the parking lot is being finished.

Work on the site plan for the planned new Rincon Elementary School is awaiting elevation details from the city of Rincon’s engineers. The state has approved preliminary plans for the school, which will be built off Fort Howard Road. The school system also will be taking bids for timber cutting on the site.

Security vestibules scheduled to be installed at the elementary schools over spring break have not been completed. Work has started at Ebenezer, Sand Hill, Guyton and Rincon elementary schools has started, Shearouse said, and the remainders are waiting on materials.

The school system has received nearly 800 contracts from certified personnel for next year. Eighteen will be retiring and 35 will be resigning. Several others were granted two-week extensions on their contract decisions since they could be relocating, pending the” work situations of family members.

The system has had representatives at several colleges with education graduates, including Georgia Southern University, University of Georgia and Clemson.

“It’s nice when folks come up to the Effingham table and they’ve heard about Effingham County,” Shearouse said.

He said the system also may explore holding mini job fairs for prospective employees.

The ECCA’s culinary arts program has had 75 students more than it can accommodate, so the school system may try to partner with Savannah Technical College for an additional instructor.