Names are near for 2 new schools
By Bobby Bryant
“Bay Road Elementary” and “Lamar-Spaulding Elementary” are the public’s top choices for names for new $20 million schools being built in Hartsville and Lamar.
The Darlington County school board will have final say on the names – a vote is expected this month – but members got a look at each community’s favorite picks during the Jan. 27 board meeting.
For the new school in Hartsville, the community likes Bay Road Elementary (32 percent), Hartsville Elementary (25 percent), South Hartsville Elementary (23 percent), New Heights Elementary (13 percent) and Unity Elementary (7 percent).
For Lamar’s school, the favorites are Lamar-Spaulding Elementary (63 percent), Lamar Elementary (33 percent) and Lamar Community Elementary (4 percent).
The board also will decide on mascots for the new schools. For Hartsville, the finalists are Bear, Eagle, Fox, Phoenix and Wolf. For Lamar, the finalists are Bear, Fox, Lion, Tiger and Panther.
School district spokeswoman Audrey Childers said the voting process followed the one to name Darlington’s new elementary school, opening this year, for J.L. Cain. (The new elementary will replace a school that’s long been named for Cain and another school, Brunson-Dargan.) Committees were formed, choices narrowed and votes were cast by e-mail and paper ballots.
Also at last week’s meeting, the board agreed to boost the construction budget for the county’s new schools by $1.2 million to add playground equipment, school furniture and storage buildings for utility equipment.
Most of the board members seemed to feel that the budget request was reasonable considering that the school district is building new elementaries that will cost about $20 million each. But board member Wanda Hassler warned that the board needs to be cautious about expanding construction budgets significantly over previous estimates.
The board also recognized high-school students for athletic achievements:
Madison Rhodes of the Hartsville High School volleyball team was chosen to participate in the 2019 North-South Volleyball Game.
Four Lamar High School football players earned spots on the 2019 S.C. Football Coaches Association Class A All-State Football Team. They are Shane Amerson, Cameron Galloway, Jalen Langley and Anthony Walton.
Hartsville High School football players Justin Abraham and Kevon Haigler were invited to take part in the 2019 Shrine Bowl Game of the Carolinas.
Shane Amerson of Lamar High School was chosen to participate in the 2019 Touchstone Energy Cooperatives Bowl/North-South Football Game.
Darlington High School’s Rileigh Hughes earned a spot on the 2019 S.C. All-State Cross-Country Team.