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Archive for the ‘News’ Category

UPDATE: Greenville County Schools Will Start the 2023-24 School Year First Week of August

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Greenville County Schools in Greenville, SC proposed a change to the 2023-24 school year calendar In November and asked for feedback from parents and staff. They announced that results of that feedback and the new 2023-24 school calendar.

Screenshot of GCS 2023-24 calendar

New School Year Calendars Released

UPDATE: December 14, 2022

Greenville County Schools has announced that they have changed the 2023-24 school year calendar. Instead of starting school the second week of August, they will now begin August 8, 2023. The school year will end before Memorial Day Weekend on May 22, 2024.

In an email to media, GCS said: “The calendars reflect a shift to allow the fall academic semester to end prior to Winter Break. This adjustment will be academically beneficial to students, and the feedback received regarding this shift was extremely positive, with 74% of respondents in favor. Midterms, finals and state testing will be completed before students leave for winter break, rather than in January when they return to school after an extended break. “

The 2023-24 School Year Calendar

For the first time, the District is releasing two years of school calendar. Parents can see the 2024-25 school year calendar as well.

GCS said that releasing calendars two years in advance will be the new norm in efforts to help families plan further out. The 2025-26 student calendar will be determined in Fall 2023. 

To learn about the feedback GCS received from parents and to view the 2023-24 and 2024-25 student calendars, click here.

Original Post (November 2022)

In a 53-second video, Greenville County Schools outlines their proposed changes to the 2023-24 school year calendar.

They are asking for the change in order to get all the state-required testing done before the beginning of Winter Break instead of doing it in early January when students and teachers return to the classroom.

Screenshot from GCS video

The Proposed Changes

GCS proposes that the first day of the 2023-24 school year would move a week earlier to Tuesday, August 8, 2023 instead of the usual mid-August start date.

The end of the school year would be May 22, 2024, which is before Memorial Day Weekend. Usually, the end of the school year is the first week in June.

Other school districts in South Carolina have already made this change. This current school year, 2022-23, several districts in our area including Oconee, Pickens, a handful in Greenwood, Abbeville, and McCormick, start in early August and even late July.

Feedback is Welcome

Greenville County Schools said that feedback is welcome on these new proposed changes. Parents can email the district at calendar@greenville.k12.sc.us. They are taking feedback through December 1, 2022.

For parents who are planners and have already booked next summer’s vacation, this could certainly hamper their plans. Other feedback we’ve seen is that parents feel that the first week of August is still in the middle of summer. Yet others think that this is a fantastic change because it’s so hard to get students back into the swing of the things right after the two-week winter break in order to take exams.

The other thing to consider is that many private schools follow the GCS calendar so those schools would likely be affected by this change as well.

Whatever you have to say, send an email over to district and let them know before December 1, 2022.

What do you think GCS should do?

Largest Nativity Scene in South Carolina at Church in Greenville, SC

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Did you know South Carolina’s largest nativity scene with life-size figures is right here in Greenville, SC? See the beautifully carved figures at Prince of Peace Catholic Church in Taylors through early February. 

Christmas is centered around nativity scenes and for good reason, right? The birth of Christ is why Christmas is celebrated around the world and while there are many beautiful nativity scenes, the one at Prince of Peace Catholic Church in Taylors is incredibly unique because the figures in the nativity are all life-sized and carved by an expert woodworker in Germany. 

Nativity with Christmas Trees

The Great Nativity 

The Great Nativity was revealed in 2021 after parishioners at Prince of Peace raised money through private donations to commission the pieces, which were carved by Johanne Albl of ALBL Oberammergau, who has been in the business of woodworking and sacred art in Germany since 1556.

There are 13 figures in total: the shepherd, Mary, Joseph, Baby Jesus, the camel, ox, donkey, three wise men, the Holy Spirit in the form of a dove, an angel, and a sheep.

The three wise men take awhile to reach the full nativity scene because, well, that’s how it was in the nativity story. They are gradually moved from the Narthex in the way back of the church to inside the church in the aisle to closer to the nativity throughout the Christmas season.

The biggest sculpture in the Great Nativity is the camel, weighing in at 1,600 pounds, which is actually more than most camels weigh in real life. You can’t climb on the camel (I asked). 

About the Artist 

Johanne Albl of ALBL Oberammergau carved the Great Nativity from polychrome Lindenwood. The set is the largest ever commissioned in the family’s history. They are also one of the world’s leading firms for sacred art and architecture. 

Angel Mary and Joseph

The Albl family has been woodcarvers in Germany since the mid-1500s. They are currently in their 14th generation of artists and grew from a small village in the Bavarian Alps. 

How to See the Great Nativity 

The Great Nativity at Prince of Peace can be seen in the church anytime between 7 am and 7 pm every day, and will be up between Sunday, December 3, 2023 until February 2, 2024, the Feast of the Presentation of Jesus in the Temple.  

“Christmas is a busy time for everyone and if you want a moment of peace in the craziness of the holiday season, come to the biggest nativity in South Carolina so that we can all be reminded of the innocence of a child during this beautiful season of joy and peace,” said Father Christopher Smith, pastor at Prince of Peace Catholic Church.

Fun fact about nativity scenes: the first nativity scene is attributed to St. Francis of Assisi who was inspired by his trip to the Holy Land to create the scene of Jesus’ birth. The first nativity was in Greccio, Italy in 1223, which means that this very year, 2023, is the 800th anniversary of that very first nativity scene.

Wise Men

Visitors are asked to be respectful when viewing the nativity since the church is a place of worship. The public is welcome at any time to visit, and is warmly invited to a candlelight celebration of Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve or any of the Masses held at the Church

Prince of Peace Catholic Church
1209 Brush Creek Road, Taylors

Looking for more? See Live Nativities Near Greenville, SC

Cinergy at BridgeWay: A Dine-In Cinema and Entertainment Center is Coming to BridgeWay Station in Mauldin, SC

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Have you heard about Cinergy at BridgeWay? A state-of-the-art entertainment center is coming to Greenville, SC! Cinergy Entertainment announced they will be constructing an amazing dine-in theatre, arcade, multiple escape room chambers, and bowling facility at BridgeWay Station in Mauldin. The Cinergy at BridgeWay entertainment center will join the already impressive designs of the $100 million town center coming to Greenville.

Cinergy at BridgeWay Attractions


School Districts’ News & Updates Page For Spartanburg County, South Carolina

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Looking for school news from the seven school districts in Spartanburg County? On this page, you’ll find the most recent news affecting students and parents in Spartanburg County School Districts. We’ll update as new information on masks, school closings, safety policies, and other things affecting the school day and your family as they are announced.

You’ll find the most recent news right at the top of the page. Then you can look at past press releases and announcements by district below.
Bookmark this page and check back frequently to stay informed.

Looking for information on Spartanburg School Districts? Check out our Guide to all 7 School Districts in Spartanburg County. You’ll find school calendars, helpful links, menus, and more.

New! Updates from All Of The School Districts in Spartanburg County

This article includes:
News from Spartanburg District 1
News from Spartanburg District 2
News from Spartanburg District 3
News from Spartanburg District 4
News from Spartanburg District 5
News from Spartanburg District 6
News from Spartanburg District 7


FREE COVID-19 test sites in Greenville and Spartanburg, SC

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Are you looking for Covid-19 testing in Greenville or Spartanburg, SC? The kids are back at school. Unfortunately, COVID-19 is still here. In an effort to identify and treat those who need care, as well as help curb the spread of COVID-19, the SC Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) has a list of places where you and your family can receive COVID-19 testing for free in the Upstate.


Local 4th Grader’s New YouTube Channel is Featured on Nightly News with Lester Holt

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Quarantine couldn’t stop 10-year-old homeschooler Zoe Giles of Greer. Instead of giving into boredom, she decided to teach kids how to make healthy and delicious creations in the kitchen through own cooking show on YouTube, Kids Cooking with Zoe.

Maybe she has found her new calling. Despite only starting a month ago, she has already been featured on both local and national news. Just recently, she even appeared on Nightly News with Lester Holt.

Her whole family is involved. Her little brother Max is her professional taste tester and lighting director, her Dad Fred is her director, videographer, editor and dancing coordinator, and her Mom helps her pick out or create recipes, shops and makes sure she isn’t burning herself or the house down!

Zoe dreams of having her own restaurant that feeds amazing free meals to homeless people when she grows up. She enjoys the process of creating in the kitchen and discovering how amazing the end results are.

Has your kid done something amazing while in quarantine? We would love to hear about it!