Bridges Prep makes Bob Cook permanent Head of School

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With skills both as an educational leader and for leading Bridges Preparatory School into the future, Bob Cook this week became the downtown Beaufort state charter school’s permanent Head of School.

Cook earned a Master’s degree in secondary education from The Citadel and a Bachelor’s degree in biology from the College of Education at Bowling Green State University in Ohio.

Bob Cook
Bob Cook

“Bob demonstrated to us in his six months as Interim Head of School that he is a strong educator, a stabilizing leader and a visionary who understands what it will take to lead Bridges Prep to the next step as we grow into our middle school and high school curriculum,” said John Payne, chairman of the Bridges Preparatory Board of Directors.

Bridges Preparatory School, chartered by the state in mid-2012, opened at near capacity to some 360 K-6 students last August. The Bridges Board of Directors recently entered a contract to buy the Boys & Girls Club of Beaufort facility at 1100 Boundary Street as the school’s permanent home.

Bridges has more than 140 students on its waiting list for enrollment for the upcoming school year, when it adds a seventh grade.

Cook leads Kay Keeler, Bridges’ Assistant Head of School, and the school’s exceptional faculty and staff.

“We have a great leadership team. Bob Cook is an experienced middle and high school principal and Kay Keeler is an experienced elementary school principal. It’s especially important as Bridges Prep begins adding middle and high school grades, starting with seventh grade when classes resume in August,” Payne said.

Preparations already are under way for the next school year, Cook said.

“We celebrated the end of our first exciting year and the tremendous strides we made,” Cook said. “Now we turn our attention to preparing for our bigger and better second year, including adding seventh grade and beginning our plans for renovating our facility.”

As a state charter school, Bridges Prep is open to all students in South Carolina and students are enrolled from Beaufort, Port Royal, Burton, St. Helena Island, Okatie, Bluffton, and Jasper and Hampton counties.