Local organization challenges state education system

posted by Kolbie Satterfield, Reporter - 

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) -

South Carolina is ranked 48th in the nation when it comes to education, according to U.S. News and World Report.

On Wednesday, a Charleston-area organization said that the state can do better, and they're taking a stand to demand more from not just our school districts but the state that enforces them.

"We as a community have allowed ourselves to accept a system which we know to be failing so many children and an entitlement they have," said John Read, the executive director of the Tri-County Cradle to Career Collaborative.

Cradle to Career Collaborative is working to move from talking about how bad the education system is perceived and instead do the work to make it better.

On Tuesday, the organization published a letter demanding better for students in our state schools.

In the span of 48 hours, the number of signatures supporting that letter had tripled.

Many of the signatures are from regional businesses, including people affiliated with Mercedes-Benz, as well as local government leaders.

"This letter advises the business, civic, and faith based leaders of the region that this is an unacceptable condition. We all know it,” said Read. “We also know what is required to provide education attainment for all children, and we’re silent on the subject.”

Read said when it comes to getting things done within schools, the public look beyond the people who are on the front line.

"There's far too much blame placing directed at teachers, and administrators, and superintendents when in fact the responsibility lies within the community as a whole," said Read.

Read said the students that are graduating from the South Carolina education system aren't prepared.

"The Charleston region could be this enormous growth. Imagine the number one destination in the world for people to have an education system that is performing the way it should be unsatisfactory to everybody, but certainly to the business community for whom it this a business supply chain for who it is infrastructure," said Read.Live 5 News reached out to Dorchester District 4, Berkeley County School District, Charleston County School District and Dorchester District 2 regarding the letter.

DD2 district officials said, "We are most supportive of this effort to rally community support and to challenge every citizen to assume responsibility for the quality of public schools in South Carolina."

CCSD district officials said the Charleston County School Board will consider the request to endorse this letter at their July 16 board meeting.

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