The South Carolina Education Oversight Committee (EOC) has unveiled a new public engagement campaign designed to provide information about the status of public schools in South Carolina.
The website ExpectMoreSC.com is described by EOC Chairman Neil Robinson as “a movement for kids and for the future of the state’s economy.”
“It is time to start setting a higher standard for what a globally prepared, 21st-century student looks like,” Robinson said in a release. “The first step is expecting more out of the education system, our communities, and ourselves to support students.”
Robinson points to South Carolina’s current national rankings on several indicators. ACT college readiness results released last month revealed just over 20 percent of SC’s 2018 graduating class was “college-ready.” South Carolina students did outperform the national SAT average, but lagged behind North Carolina.
Website visitors will find “playbooks” designed to give specific direction to families, community leaders, and businesses to help students and schools. EOC staff will work to match up needs with motivated individuals. Another section of the site explains the school and district report cards, which are now tentatively set for release in late November. Originally, the agency intended to release the website in conjunction with the state Education Department’s report cards. However, Education Superintendent Molly Spearman said issues with a vendor delayed the report cards’ release.
Meanwhile, the pipeline of students with the skills necessary for available jobs is shrinking. Nearly 60% of all jobs in South Carolina require a post-secondary degree or certificate. And job opportunities in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) are growing almost twice as fast as in other fields.
Robinson stressed the personal toll on students and families is far-reaching when the majority of South Carolina’s students are not adequately prepared for college and careers.