Richland One 2020-2021 Points of Pride
· It was a clean sweep! All 46 Richland One schools were named to the 2020 national list of America’s Healthiest Schools for promoting quality nutrition, regular physical activity and strong wellness policies. Five schools – A.C. Flora High, Brockman Elementary, Crayton Middle, Dreher High and Lower Richland High – won Silver Awards and 41 district schools were Bronze Award winners. Richland One is the second school district in South Carolina and the largest in the state to ever achieve 100%.
· Four Richland One high school seniors were named semifinalists in the 2021 National Merit Scholarship Program. Finalists will be selected in February 2021, and scholarship winners will be announced in the spring and summer. Richland One congratulates the following seniors for their selection as semifinalists, an honor that less than 1 percent of U.S. high school seniors achieve:
Dreher High School
A.C. Flora High School
Michael B. Davis
· Original songs by two Richland One music teachers have gone global and could be used by music teachers around the world. Two songs written by Forest Heights Elementary School teacher Salley Utley and one song written by Meredith Trobaugh of Bradley Elementary School were published in Music Play 2, a two-volume anthology of songs and lesson plans for early childhood music engagement. The collection compiled by national music publisher GIA Publications includes contributions from 57 expert practitioners from 13 countries.
· Eau Claire High School sophomore TyQwasia Williams finished sixth among 16 student-athletes competing in the girls 15-16 year-old 400-meter hurdles at the 2020 AAU (Amateur Athletic Union) National Championship Junior Olympics in Florida in August. Her accomplishment earned her 1st All-American Honors in her age group. TyQwasia is a member of the Palmetto Flash Track Club, which is coached by Alcorn Middle School track and field head coach Jeorge Hicks.
· Jack Parrot, a University of South Carolina golf star and A.C. Flora High School graduate, recently selected his Flora social studies teacher, Bailey Melvin, to be honored in the Southeastern Conference (SEC) Extra Yard for Teachers Initiative. A story about Parrot and the impact Ms. Melvin had on his life will be broadcast on SEC Nation on the SEC Network. The recognition includes a $3,500 grant to Ms. Melvin to purchase school supplies and materials. The SEC and the College Football Playoffs (CFP) Foundation sponsor the Extra Yard project to support teachers and bring awareness to the importance of education.
· Four articles from Richland One educators highlighting the success of district literacy, health, meal and parent partnership programs were recently published in a national John Hopkins University journal. The book, entitled Promising Partnerships Practices – An annual collection from the members of the National Network of Partnership Schools - John Hopkins University 2020, included the following submissions:
o Academic Goals – Part I – p. 18, Brockman Elementary School – “ Make Your Mark: Family Literacy Night,” submitted by LaKenna McCrorey, parent and family engagement specialist
o Non-Academic Goals – Part II – p. 31, W.G. Sanders Middle School – “Student Wellness Checks,” submitted by Andrenna A. Smith, principal of W.G. Sanders Middle School
o Climate of Partnership – Part III – p. 39, Hand Middle School – “Parent Super Saturday,” submitted by B-Linda Rogers, parent and family engagement specialist
o District – Part IV – p. 47, ”Richland One Strong: Meals for Children When Schools Closed,” submitted by Latorsha Murray, consultant, Office of Federal and State Programs
· The writings and artwork of five Richland One students was featured in Kids in Print 2020, Richland Library’s annual youth literary magazine. The district extends is congratulations to the following young authors and artists:
o Alice Dunlap, A.C. Flora High School
o Lily Moftakhar, Crayton Middle School
o Zara Shah-Fuente, Meadowfield Elementary School
o Audrey Stuart, Rosewood Elementary School
o Sadee Broughton, W.G. Sanders Middle School
The poetry, stories, short plays, essays, drawings and photographs of 40 children from across the Midlands were selected for publication from the 200 submissions to the library in the 2019-2020 school year.
· Southeast Middle School teacher Lekena Ackerman, an award-winning teacher who’s been known to wear colonial outfits and pirate costumes to engage her social studies students, was featured on NBC’s Today Show on September 21. A videotaped story about Ms. Ackerman and her students kicked off NBC’s TODAY Education Virtual Plaza series. She and some of her students also appeared live during the plaza segment. Ms. Ackerman’s accomplishments include being named the 2020 South Carolina Law Related Education Middle School Teacher of the Year by the SC Bar Law Related Education Division. Her students have excelled in the state Mock Trial competition and are the current state champions in the We The People Constitutional Convention Competition. Ms. Ackerman also is the current Teacher of the Year for Southeast Middle School.
· W.A. Perry Middle School computer technology teacher Shannon Rister was named the Educator of the Month for September in the South Carolina Financial Literacy Master Teacher Program. “Without financial skills and a knowledge of good consumer behaviors, our students could face such life challenges as poor credit, overwhelming debt and inadequate savings,” said Treasurer Loftis, who announced the honor. “Ms. Rister’s dedication and commitment to teaching personal finance in the classroom will not only influence her students’ long-term financial habits but will also enhance their future quality of life.” The Master Teacher Program provides incentives to K-12 teachers who are experts in the area of financial literacy and have a desire to teach professional development workshops to other educators in their schools and districts.
· A.J. Lewis Greenview Elementary School first-grade teacher Mukkaramah Smith recently received the Donald H. Graves Award for Excellence in the Teaching of Writing. This prestigious honor from the National Council of English Teachers (NCTE) recognizes exceptional teachers who have demonstrated how their teaching skills and methods have led to significant growth in students’ writing abilities.
· When colleagues describe Lower Richland High School Career Specialist Cynthia Flemming-Tyler, expect to hear words like “impeccable,” “going the extra mile” and “an advocate for students.” Those exceptional qualities earned Ms. Flemming-Tyler a new honor as the 2020 Midlands Region Career Specialist of the Year. The award from the Midlands Education and Business Alliance (MEBA) recognizes outstanding educators who are preparing their students for the workforce through rigorous academics, real-world experiences and high-demand skills.