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Concerned parents look at CCHS discipline

A group of parents who say they are concerned about discipline problems at Colleton County High School are preparing to meet with officials with the Colleton County School District, and say they are also seeking more input from other parents who might share their concerns.
The concerns stem from a recent security concern at CCHS, where members from the Colleton County Sheriff’s Office were called to the school for reports of a weapon and fighting. Those were separate incidents that occurred on the same day. Based on information provided by both the sheriff’s office and by school district officials, no weapon was found at school during the course of those agencies’ investigations.
However, several parents say they are still receiving texts from their children during school, who report being scared or uneasy in their classrooms. The mothers of some of these students also say their children are not able to adequately learn, based on the actions of a small group of students at CCHS.
Cyndi Brewer Roberts is one of those parents. Roberts is a mother of two daughters who attend CCHS. “There are parents who are fed up with disruption in the classroom,” she said. “We believe Colleton County needs to set a new tome, to promote academics in the classroom and to implement new disciplinarian structures. Learning should not be interrupted by the choices of a few students who do not want to learn,” said Roberts.
“We have a lot of kids who do great in school, and who want to do great in life. We need to focus on them, and not give all of our resources to those few students who do not want to be there.” Roberts, along with several other mothers, are leading a social media campaign aimed at improving discipline at the school. Specifically, the parents want to also work the sheriff’s office and other community agencies to find out why some identified youth gang members are still allowed to attend CCHS. The parents also want to find out why teachers are not more involved in the discipline needs inside the classroom, said Roberts.
“We are sick of disobedient students having all of the rights in our school system,” she said. “We can’t go into homes and address these issues with the parents, so we are reaching out to churches and other organizations to find out what the solution to this problem might be. We can only control our children’s learning environment.”
Additionally, Roberts said she and other members of this group want to advocate for teachers, who she says should have more control over what happens to students who are disrupting their educational session. “The teachers need to have more say in what happens to the students that are causing problems. They know more about what the students are going through, and what they are doing,” she said.
This newspaper reached out to district officials, addressing the concerns of these parents.
In response, Colleton County Superintendent Dr. Franklin Foster said he and CCHS leaders would “welcome” speaking with these parents about their concerns. As of press deadline on Tuesday, this group of parents had not yet spoken with district officials about their concerns.
Foster also said the high school’s discipline policies are in line with the school district’s Code of Conduct and Administrative Rules, which are decided upon and voted on by the Colleton County School Board.
According to Foster, the board recently updated the district’s Student Code of Conduct and shared this new policy with all parents in the district. “The district evaluates its policies on a continual basis,” he said. “Mr. Cannon or I would welcome the opportunity to speak with any parent with concerns as the safety of everyone’s child is a top priority.”