ENC high schools merge, shutting down one of the schools

MARTIN COUNTY, N.C. (WITN)- High school students in Martin County are in a transition period as two schools become one.

‘We were both kind of operating on the bare minimum giving students. They had to have an order to graduate, but not really what they wanted as far as providing for future vision,” said Riverside High School Counselor Adrienne Whitaker.

Starting next school year, the two high schools, South Creek and Riverside, will operate out of Riverside, but under the name Martin County High School. But the students have already seen the change.

‘All of the high school is already merged. We did a temporary merge this semester due to the teacher shortage,” said Martin County’s Superintendent Michelle White.

She says students are experiencing even more because of the change.

“We are truly better together, so when we merged, children had more opportunities, they had greater electives, they had greater extracurriculars,” said White.

A senior who was at South Creek High School says, “I’m really glad that I went to Riverside because it gave me a chance to be in more activities, for example, like FFA. I really enjoy being in that program,” said Dy’Nyah Pettaway.

However, one parent said that her two kids who were at Riverside don’t feel that the change is positive.

“When they do have their breaks in between, it’s like chaotic because it’s too many kids,” said parent Monica Lopez-Hernandez.

The two schools combined now have around 730 students.

The high school students will no longer be on South Creek’s campus, but a middle school and alternative learning school will still operate there.

WITN was also told that athletics have already been combined, and while neither school had JV teams, they are now going to bring that back.