MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WBTW) – As Horry County Schools start a new school year, there is concern over the amount of traffic coming into and out of the schools in the Burgess community.
St. James Intermediate is one of the newly constructed schools in Horry County. It’s located just off of Holmestown Road at 9641 Scipio Lane, which is just across from Burgess Elementary.
The main concern stems from a single entrance into the schools to drop off children, and school officials say they prepared ahead of the first day of school to try to alleviate some of the congestion.
“Ultimately our goal is to get our students in the building as safe as possible and off campus as safe as possible with their parents and the school buses,” explains Principal David Cupolo.
The principal explains that an extra lane for increased traffic and a new three-way stop at the intermediate school’s entrance is expected to keep the elementary school traffic flowing in a separate direction from St. James Intermediate.
A Facebook post from St. James Intermediate directs parents on the most efficient drop-off process:
- Parents of intermediate students to use the right traffic lane
- Intermediate students can be dropped off beginning at 7:00 a.m.
- Families with children at both the intermediate and elementary schools should drop off the intermediate student first, take a right when exiting the school, and drop off elementary students last
- Families who have children at Burgess Elementary and Saint James Intermediate will need to plan to drive through both car rider lines – students may not walk between the schools.
Despite the accommodations by the schools to avoid traffic congestion, feedback from parents on the Horry County Schools Facebook page indicates there was still some overcrowding.
“The traffic going into Burgess Elementary School and the St. James Intermediate School was absolutely insane,” comments one parent. “The times of the school days need to be changed. A 10-minute difference is not going to do anything for the traffic.”
Principal Cupolo, however, says he anticipates the congestion will dissipate as the school year continues.
“We have a lane for parking, a lane for parents to drop off students,” says Cupolo. “We’re going to do our best to manage it, but at the beginning of the year, there’s always a lot more car traffic than normal, but in about two weeks we hope to get it panned out.”
St. James Intermediate parents were also advised they would not be permitted to take students to class in order to avoid an even greater delay.