Columbus County is a 959 square mile county in southeastern North Carolina that lies a short distance from the Atlantic Ocean. We are approximately 30 minutes north of Myrtle Beach, S.C., and 30 minutes west of Wilmington, N,C. Columbus County is conveniently located off of I-74 and U.S. Highway 701, and just a quick hop from Interstate 95. Framed by the Waccamaw, Cape Fear and Lumber Rivers, Columbus County is a boater’s paradise. Lake Waccamaw, a shallow “bay” lake, probably formed by a great meteor shower, covers almost 9,000 acres in the county.
The mission of Columbus County Schools is to instill in students the academic and social skills essential for responsible and productive citizenship in a global society. Columbus County Schools is a rural school system that serves a diverse group of approximately 5,500 students in Pre-K through 12th grade. The seventeen schools in the district, including the three STEM high schools and one Career and College Academy, enroll less than 900 students at each location.
We offer a large Career Technical Education Program with areas of certification offered in Career Tech Prep. There is one-to-one wireless connectivity in all schools with a BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) policy. Our district has a large Arts Education program in grades K-12 and hosts “Celebrate the Arts,” the state’s largest student arts festival. There are active programs in athletics, JROTC and English Language Learners to serve all student interests.
Columbus County Schools provides a work environment that is student-centered and provides teachers with the tools and support necessary to be successful. Through administrative support, Columbus County Schools hopes to foster in each of its staff the desire and ability to innovate new and effective teaching methods that will result in more well-rounded, and better prepared, graduates. We recruit professionals who are excited about their profession and seek to grow as classroom teachers, providing our children with the highest quality education.
Columbus County Schools offers a strong Beginning Teacher Support Program (BTSP) where all teachers are assigned a mentor teacher for the first three years of teaching. There is a BTSP coordinator that provides additional support to teachers new to the district by coaching and conducting professional development opportunities geared toward their needs.
Columbus County Schools supports all staff through an active professional development program. We are fortunate to partner with multiple colleges and universities, including those in the University of North Carolina system. Professional development and grant opportunities are numerous through these partnerships. The school district also provides personalized professional development for all staff through the curriculum departments. We are always exploring ways to "grow" our staff through multiple opportunities.
Columbus County Schools offers several employment benefits besides the state salary and benefits. We offer local supplements for all staff and have multiple State Employee Credit Union branches in the area. Supplemental life, dental, cancer, disability, critical illness and vision insurances are available. There are also optional 401k plans and flexible medical spending accounts offered to all employees. The district offers an optional $1,000, Interest-free loan for new teachers and reimbursement for NCEL and Praxis II Subject Area Tests.
Our goal in Columbus County Schools is to create respectful, responsible adults, and to do so means that each one of us must aspire to provide our children with the skills and aptitudes necessary to succeed in all areas of life. We believe the child comes first, and in order for a child to be successful in education, the workplace and life, we must strive to educate the WHOLE child.
Every day our students are involved in academics, career technical education, the arts, technology and extracurricular activities. We also believe every child can learn. In Columbus County Schools, our dedicated administrators, teachers and staff go to work each day with the notion that every child will be touched. To assist in this, we use multiple approaches to create interest in our high school students for becoming future teachers. Our teacher assistants are also eligible for tuition assistance for completing educator programs.
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