Beaufort County School District K-12 students whose academic work has suffered during the coronavirus pandemic might be eligible for free special assistance.

“The coronavirus pandemic has forced instructional changes that have been challenging for many students and their families,” said Superintendent Frank Rodriguez. “This new initiative is designed to identify and support those students creatively and effectively.”

Schools have already begun identifying possible student participants for ENGAGE South Carolina, a partnership that includes the district, the S.C. Department of Education, and the Grad Alliance, a nationwide program

Lakinsha Swinton, the district’s director of student services, said students who qualify for the program and choose to participate will get an academic coach to work with them to develop a plan to get them on track for a strong finish to the school year.

Trained teachers and social workers will identify students’ needs and support them, Swinton said. Qualifications include being at risk of failing classes, chronically absent, designated as homeless, among other criteria.

Families can also request the free assistance, Swinton said.

For more information, parents should contact their children’s school, or call 803-897-8517.