Renee Atkinson of Aynor High School named 2024 South Carolina Teacher of the Year

April 26, 2023

Max Metcalf, BMW; State Superintendent Ellen Weaver; Renee Atkinson of Aynor High School; Gov. Henry McMaster; First Lady Peggy McMaster

State Superintendent of Education Ellen Weaver announced at the annual South Carolina Teacher of the Year event that Renee Atkinson, an English teacher at Aynor High School from Horry County Schools, is the 2024 South Carolina Teacher of the Year.

“Renee pours her heart and soul into the lives of her students each day at Aynor High School, and is truly deserving of this prestigious honor,” said Superintendent Weaver. “She will represent South Carolina’s over 55,000 educators in this role, and I know she will leave a lasting impact on them, just as she does inside her classroom.”

A 10-12 grade English teacher, Atkinson earned her undergraduate degree in History from Clemson University, a master’s in Secondary English from Francis Marion University, and an Educational Specialist degree in Curriculum and Instruction from Liberty University in 2013. This marks her 20th year in the classroom.

Atkinson has held various positions in her education career, but her true calling is teaching. She is the current Aynor High School IB coordinator, an IB examiner for English A: Literature, and AP Reader for AP Literature and Composition. She served as Aynor’s curriculum coach from 2014-2019 in addition to various other teacher leadership positions throughout her career.

Atkinson regularly provides professional development opportunities for teachers in Horry County Schools. She has presented at state level conferences including EdTech and the South Carolina Council for Teachers of English.

As part of the state Teacher of the Year awards program, Renee will receive $25,000 and a brand-new BMW for one year.

Considered one of the country’s strongest, the South Carolina Teacher of the Year program celebrates excellence and strengthens the teaching force by honoring and recognizing exceptional teachers on a district, state, and national level. These awards not only assist in retention efforts but serve as a powerful recruitment tool.

The South Carolina Teacher of the Year serves for one school year as a roving ambassador providing mentoring, attending speaking engagements, working with teacher cadets and teaching fellows, leading the State Teacher Forum, and serving as the state spokesperson for over 55,000 educators.