Districts Top Teachers to Gather at Regional Forums this Fall

October 7, 2009

ROCK HILL, SC – October 7, 2009 – School districts across South Carolina have named their teacher of the year and many are prepping to participate in regional teacher leadership forums sponsored by the Center for Educator Recruitment, Retention, and Advancement (CERRA).

Beginning October 14 in Rock Hill, CERRA will host the first of five regional forums to bring together the region’s top teachers for a one-day professional development seminar led by 2010 South Carolina Teacher of the Year Bryan Coburn, a pre-engineering and computer science teacher from Northwestern High School. A master teacher with Project Lead the Way, Coburn has scheduled forum meetings on the campuses of district technology centers as a way to showcase the facilities.

“There is a direct correlation between great teachers and student performance.  These forums allow some of the states outstanding teachers to network and to learn from each other not only on this day but on an ongoing and regular basis.  Professional development is vital for teacher growth which ultimately affects the children they teach.  I am excited about working with this exceptional group of educators,” Coburn said.

Five technology centers have been selected to host the regional forums and each is delighted to host their area’s top teachers on their campus. Directors at each site are making final preparations to engage their students and welcome the teachers to their school.

The following technology centers will serve as the host sites for the regional forums:
• Applied Technology Center, Rock Hill, S.C., on October 14
• Aiken County Career and Technology Center, Aiken, S.C., on October 20
• Thunderbolt Career and Technology Center, Walterboro, S.C., on October 22
• Florence Career Center, Florence, S.C., on October 30
• RD Anderson Applied Technology Center, Moore, S.C., on November 10

The regional teacher leadership forums lay the foundation for the State Teacher Forum, a two-day professional development workshop held annually in February for all 85 current district teachers of the year. In recent years the National Teacher of the Year has provided the keynote address to this accomplished group of teacher leaders. Plans are underway for the 2010 workshop.


CERRA, an independent state agency located on the campus of Winthrop University, is the oldest and most established teacher recruitment program in the country. The purpose of CERRA is to provide leadership in identifying, attracting, placing and retaining well-qualified individuals for the teaching profession in South Carolina. CERRA’s programs have been adopted at school, district and state levels in more than 30 states in the United States.