Some Grand Strand parents turning to virtual home school, one online charter school caps enrollment following thousands of applications

Local News

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WBTW) – More parents are turning to home school options as the school year approaches.

South Carolina Connections Academy is a full-time, public, virtual charter school. It’s executive director says, they will have triple the number of students this year than in years past.

“We have had an unprecedented number of applications,” Josh Kitchens said. “We have had more than 10,000 applications this year.”

Kitchens said the surge of students, prompted their board of education to put a cap on enrollment at 6,500 students. Right now, he says they are working on hiring more teachers.

Two of the new students at SC Connections Academy, are Sydni Knights two son’s.
The Myrtle Beach mom told News13, if her kids were going to continue their education online, she wanted it to be through a program that specialized in virtual learning.

Knight also says, she worried about the potential of her kids wearing a mask all day and was frustrated at how long it’s taken to learn what next school year will look like.

“I understand it, I get why it’s taking so long, but I need structure; I’m a college student so I need to know what’s going on with them so I can plan for myself,” Knight explained.

Christina Wynn says she and her husband enrolled their oldest son at SC Connections Academy in February and have since enrolled their youngest.

“Looking at how Benjamin’s education went last year virtually and comparing that to what our son McCartney’s education looked like virtually; it was two different ball games so it was really important for us to make sure McCartney had that same structure,” Wynn said.

Wynn and Knight agree, socialization is a large part of education.

“Our kids are enrolled in sports throughout the County here and they have lots of friends so we just make sure that they get that same interaction with kids that they would at school,” Wynn explained.

Knight says her kid’s best friends also enrolled in South Carolina Connections Academy and she believes kids would have less socialization in schools this fall.

“It doesn’t really seem like the kids are going to have much social interaction if they go to school,” she said. “They are talking about not going to the cafeteria for lunch, they’re not going to be able to regulate kids going to recess or the gym. I can’t see them being able to do those activities while maintaining the six-feet distance.”

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