Beaufort Co. school district proposing $439 million referendum to fund construction

Published: Sep. 20, 2023 at 4:49 PM EDT|Updated: Sep. 20, 2023 at 5:46 PM EDT
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BEAUFORT COUNTY, S.C (WTOC) - Beaufort County voters will be faced with a $439 million decision Nov. 7.

The school district is proposing a referendum that would fund construction around the county and some places would see major changes if this gets approved.

”This referendum is about updating a lot of areas where we have growth and providing services that are needed,” Robert Oetting said.

One of those areas is Hilton Head Island High School.

“We’re going to start with a three-story structure right over here.”

Their current structure was built in the 80s, and the district says it’s due for an upgrade.

”They’ve done a great job of keeping it up and it looks great but there are several systems that are at the end of their life... we need to replace those and give them a modern school facility.”

The principal here says they’ll certainly be able to do that if this referendum passes.

“We’re going to have a great hallway that goes straight through the building from here all the way to the front and there’s also going to be connection to this hallway here so people can leave the three story building and go into that part of the building as well.”

The current building houses 1300 plus students each day, but some teachers have to share classrooms. That wouldn’t be a problem with the new build.

“The classes are kind of small right now so it limits the instructional strategy that a teacher might have, whereas with a bigger classroom you could have stations or multiple ways you could provide instruction,” Principal Steve Schidrich said.

He says the theatre and art wing would get upgrades too and there would also be a new career wing built all of this funded through bond investments, and not a raise of the mileage rate.