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John de la Howe School is the oldest educational institution in South Carolina below the college level. It was established in 1797 through the will of Dr. John de la Howe, a French physician who emigrated to Charleston in 1764.

JDLH became an agency of the state of South Carolina in 1918. In the 1980s, the mission changed to serving children who struggled in a conventional school, offering a haven for them to grow and succeed.

In 2019, in the midst of the global COVI-19 pandemic, the campus welcomed an entirely new mission as a Governor’s School, joining the South Carolina Governor’s School for the Arts and Humanities, and the South Carolina Governor’s School for Science and Mathematics. Gov. Henry McMaster said the school “will go a long way in shaping the future of South Carolina’s superior agriculture industry.”

This bold new direction comes at a time when agriculture jobs are plentiful, but too few have the skills to enter the industry. Our skilled and committed faculty, both agricultural and academic, are prepared to help students take leading roles in our state and beyond.

“We’ve sent a message to our children that it’s never too late to be what you could have been and it’s never too early to start,” said Sen. Gerald Malloy, chief sponsor of the bill. He predicts graduates will become “leaders here in our great state.”

The new South Carolina Governor's School for Agriculture at John de la Howe honored its first-ever graduating class under the new mission in May 2022. 

Campus Panoramic Shot