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      Committee suggests new schools In Mt. Pleasant

      MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCIV) --{}Fixing overcrowded classrooms was the goal of a Mount Pleasant group on Wednesday as its members tried to find solution to school population problems.

      "The topic and the subject of schools in Mount Pleasant is in the top three every single month," said a member of the Blue Ribbon Committee of Council on Education.

      Members know what's on the minds of many parents east of the Cooper.

      "Bricks and mortar. And space with roofs that are solid," said another committee official.

      They agree that new school construction is needed to solve overcrowding problems. That's why they're meeting now to resume a dialogue with Charleston County school leaders.

      "Past couple years, we haven't been so active in interacting with the school district. And we've lost that connection. When you lose that connection, they move on and get back to the one-size-fits-all," said Paul Gawrych, a Mt. Pleasant Town Council member.{}

      "Brand new comprehensive nine through twelve high school," said Kate Darby, a member of the Mt. Pleasant Blue Ribbon Committee.

      She describes one of the critical needs the committee has determined.

      "Everything that's offered at a, you know, 1,500-student high school and would offer some of the things that are offered at Wando, and would offer some of the kind of classes that Wando doesn't offer now," said Darby, who's also chair of the Charleston County School District Committee Work Group.

      The committee is also recommending a new elementary school and new football stadium, paid for if a 1-cent sales tax referendum is passed later this year.

      "I think this committee will be able to really work with the school district and promote what we need in Mount Pleasant, as far as bricks and mortar," said Darby.

      Mayor Linda Page has mentioned possible locations at Carolina Park, the old Wando High School, and the old Whitesides Elementary School.

      Gawrych said if the school board doesn't prioritize East Cooper schools, town council won't support the proposed 1-cent sales tax referendum.

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