After an extensive review process, the Bridges Preparatory School (BPS) charter was renewed on March 9th, 2023 for 10 years by the South Carolina Public Charter School District.
BPS opened their doors in 2013, serving 360 students in grades Kindergarten through 6th grade. Every year since, the school has grown and now serves more than 1,200 students in grades Kindergarten through 12th grade.
Founded by a group of local parents and citizens, the BPS charter was written with the goal of increasing school choice, providing equal access to high-quality public education, and giving parents a voice.
“Our charter school started because parents were looking for a voice in their children’s education,” said BPS founding member and current employee, Mrs. Amy Painton. “We increased school choice and the quality of public education for children in Beaufort and the surrounding areas. I am proud to be a founder of this school and even more excited to see what the next 10 years holds for Bridges Preparatory School and our community.”
Over the last 10 years, BPS has provided students with a high-quality education, using the Paideia teaching method and a STEM-infused curriculum. In 2021, BPS was voted the Lowcountry’s Best Public Charter School.
The momentum of the school is high and is not slowing down anytime soon. Over the next 10 years, BPS plans to focus on five primary goals: Academic Programming, Equity and Inclusive Environments (Safe and Caring), Facilities and Infrastructure, Talent Acquisition and Retention, and Communication and Community Partnerships.
“I would like to thank our school community for their support and dedication to our wonderful school,” said BPS CEO Gary McCulloch. “10 years ago, a group of passionate citizens traveled to Columbia with hopes and dreams of a new school that would provide the choice and opportunity that so many citizens desired. The first 10 years were not easy and new schools have challenges, barriers, and disappointments, but our group of passionate educators, staff, students, and families were resilient, and the success of where we are today is due to the perseverance of many.”
BPS would like to acknowledge a group of current staff members who have been with the school since the beginning: Jenny Badgett, Sarah Bullard, Joan Drury, Tim Drury, Kate Lackey, Jessi Mullen, Amy Painton, Erin Ruth, Amanda Sanders, and Sulatha Shetty.
“Bridges Preparatory School is in a position to springboard from our big goals into a school campus of excellence,” McCulloch said. “For the past 10 years, BPS has provided our students with a high-quality, student-centered education, and this charter renewal ensures the school continues this momentum for the next 10 years.”