16 S.C. schools are finalists for Carolina First Palmetto’s Finest Awards

January 14, 2009

S. C. Association of School Administrators & Carolina First Bank To Honor Top S.C. Schools

COLUMBIA, SC – January 14, 2009 – Sixteen South Carolina schools are finalists for the 2009 Carolina First Palmetto’s Finest Schools Awards after extensive evaluations by fellow educators and previous Palmetto’s Finest winners. The application process includes elements on student achievement, faculty training, program goals and teaching quality, office practices and community involvement. 

Last fall, 25 South Carolina schools submitted a 20-page application and received an onsite examination visit by a review committee. The 16 finalists are now undergoing a second onsite evaluation.

The finalist schools will gather in Columbia on Monday, March 9, at the Koger Center for the Arts, at 6:30 p.m. to learn which four or five of them have won the top honors. The coveted awards, sponsored by Carolina First Bank and the SC Association of School Administrators (SCASA), are presented each year to two elementary schools, one middle school, one high school and possibly one special category school.

The 16 finalists are as follows:

Bell’s Crossing Elementary, Greenville County    

Guinyard Elementary, Calhoun County

McDonald Elementary, Georgetown County

Midway Elementary, Anderson 5

Oakland Elementary, Spartanburg 2

Skyland Elementary, Greenville County

Springfield Elementary, Greenwood 50

West View Elementary, Spartanburg 6

Lugoff-Elgin Middle, Kershaw County

Riverside Middle, Greenville County

Camden High, Kershaw County

Loris High, Horry County

Spring Valley High, Richland 2

Wade Hampton High, Greenville County

Wren High, Anderson 1

Greenville Technical Charter High, Greenville County 

The SC Association of School Administrators (SCASA) and Carolina First Bank present the awards each year to two elementary schools, one middle school and one high school which offer the best in innovative, effective educational programs. This year, SCASA created a special category for schools such as charter and magnet schools, and Greenville Technical Charter High School is the first to compete in this category. The Carolina First Palmetto’s Finest Award is celebrating its 31st year and is one of the most coveted and respected awards among educators.

“We’re pleased once again to partner with Carolina First Bank to offer this recognition for outstanding and innovative schools,” said Molly Spearman, SCASA executive director. “Carolina First’s support validates the importance of quality education for South Carolina’s young people.”

Other partners for the 2009 awards include Data Recognition Corporation, which is sponsoring a leadership reception before the ceremony.

SCASA is the professional organization for school leaders in South Carolina, with a membership of more than 2,800.  From professional development opportunities and research, to publications and legislative advocacy, SCASA’s focus is to support school leaders in providing the best possible education for South Carolina’s young people.  As a state affiliate of three national associations for school leaders, SCASA also works on the national level.