James Island Charter High School’s international outreach efforts

James Island Charter High School's international outreach efforts (Image 1)

Community spirit runs high at James Island Charter High School,
and often that spirit transcends international borders. We're on James
Island for our Cool School of the week.

They have awards and accomplishments, but the spirit of giving is
what they are most proud of at James Island Charter High School.
Principal Robert Bohnstengel says, “That community spirit on James
Island that has been famous throughout the county has now gone

James Island Charter High School is no stranger to giving back to the
community. Through fundraising projects, they were able to raise a
thousand dollars to help a family in need over the holidays. Students
help at soup kitchens, hold coat drives for red cross, street sweeps,
and marsh sweeps, and do what they can to help keep Folly Beach clean.
Senior Nicholas Smillie says, “We are dedicated to our community, just
helping our community and helping keep our community clean.”

Now their efforts have gone global. Ninth grade principal Major Rich
Gordon is deployed in Bosnia with his National Guard unit. The students
and faculty sent him journals, but wanted to do more, so they helped him
and his unit adopt a hospital. They provided gifts to sick and injured
children in Bosnia. Numerous clubs and organizations along with the
James Island community sent boxes of toys and gifts to Bosnia. Senior
Lizzie Mayo says, “We helped with the Bosnia gift program. I'm so happy
we can make a difference from so far away.”

They say it's all about being bigger than yourself. Student body
president Curtis Williams says, “It's fabulous. I think we should reach
out to any other place that needs help. I think we did a great job in
reaching out to Bosnia.”

The Trojans strive to make a difference right here in Lowcountry, and
around the world. Teacher Melanie King says, “I'm very proud of the
community that James Island has here in the school and outside the
school. When we were able to go outside of the United States and be part
of something like that, I think it allows kids to know we are a world,
but we are also very small, we're all connected.” Williams says, “It's a
Cool School because we rock the house. We have the best spirit here, I
love here.”

Students volunteer on weekends for community service, and provide
clothing for homeless children across the country. James Island Charter
High school received the Community Pride award in 2010.

Coming up Friday on News 2 Today, we'll tell you about the
International Baccalaureate program, and present them with our Cool
School award.

We want to hear about the good things going on at your school. Send
an email to Octavia at omitchell@wcbd.com. Maybe your school will be the
next Cool School of the week.

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