South goes virtual; West moves game

Rapid testing will be available by appointment Friday at the Health Department in Whiteville.

South Columbus High School will be closed to in-person instruction next week due to COVID-19, County Schools spokesman Kelly Jones said this morning.

Since Aug. 9, there have been 92 positive COVID cases among staff and students at South Columbus, Jones said. There is also a confirmed cluster centered around the football team. Most positives, however, are coming from community spread of the virus.

Classes are expected to resume regular schedule Sept. 7, unless COVID-19 cases continue to rise.

“Due to the high number of COVID positives, Columbus County Schools is moving South Columbus High School to full-time virtual for the week of Aug. 30 – Sept. 3, Jones said in an email. “This time could be extended as dictated by the number of COVID infections in the immediate community. We will decide regarding a return to in-person instruction at the end of the week.”

West Columbus had already rescheduled its football game to Monday night, to allow West Bladen’s team to complete quarantine. 

Whiteville High School’s game against West Brunswick was also cancelled for tonight, due a rise in the number of cases in Brunswick County.

Jones said no other sporting events will be knocked off the schedule right now. He asked parents to limit social activities and gatherings as much as possible, to slow the rate of community spread. Masks and social distancing should be used if a gathering must occur, Jones said. The school system is also encouraging vaccinations for those who want them.


“We all want a return to normal,” Jones said. “Our students have suffered academically, athletically and socially because of the disruptions created by the pandemic. We need students back in school, but in order to do so, we need your help. If there is a suspected exposure or symptoms in your home, do not send your students to school.”

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Jefferson Weaver is the managing editor of columbuscountynews.com and news director for WTXY radio. He can be reached at 910.632.4965, or by email at jeffersonweaver@columbuscountynews.com.