Brewer Middle School students’ parents were alerted by a phone blast at 1:45 p.m. Wednesday that the rock near the back of the school had separated and they would need to pick up their children at the front of the school for precautionary reasons.
Greenwood County School District 50 also alerted the public through social media posts.
District spokesman Johnathan L. Graves called the rock “almost a landmark.” He said the rock had been at the Brewer Middle since it opened during the 2005-06 school year, and he would use it to direct people through the school.
District 50 was alerted about the rock’s separation at 12:30 p.m. and administrators quickly got to work.
Graves said after the district assessed the rock and its stability, changes to the dismissal schedule were made.
In addition to parents having to pick up their children from front of the school, buses and shuttles were told to come down to the auxiliary road near the back of the school to load students, Graves said.
Sperry Services used an excavator to stabilize the rock and eliminate the risk of any mishaps in the near future.
“We are very appreciative of the quick response of our school administration and district officials in dealing with this ‘unusual’ situation,” Brewer Middle School Assistant Principal George Austin said. “Dismissal went very smoothly for our school this afternoon. As soon as we received the all clear from district officials, we returned to a normal dismissal for bus riders in the bus circle. We would like to thank our students, staff, and parents for their patience and cooperation during this situation.”
District 50 Maintenance Director Scott Duncan said it’s hard to say how the rock separated. He thought the amount of rain that Greenwood had endured over the past week might be the culprit, but he was not sure if that played a significant factor.
“We’re going to get some pricing on having this cleaned up, (and) maybe work on the landscape here,” he said.
Duncan said he is not sure what the district is going to end up doing about the rock.
“It’s something we’ll discuss with the administration in the next few days and come up with a plan,” he said.