Spartanburg School District One
ONE News. ONE Click.
August 2017
Welcome Back!
Dear Spartanburg District One Students, Parents, Families, and Communities:

I want to personally welcome you back to the 2017-2018 school year!  I hope that your summer was filled with memories, learning, and fun.  Within each building, we are busily preparing for the first day of school which will begin on Thursday, August 17th.

As District One meets the learning needs of each student, it is essential to understand that students begin and end their learning in different places through the year. Helping each child, teachers use many different forms of assessments to measure student learning. A new kindergarten readiness assessment will help our youngest learners identify skills they need to prepare for the new year. Early learners in grades 1 and 2 are assessed using many formats through the year. Ask your child about his or her reading activities each day. Home support is so important to a child’s reading growth.

At the elementary and middle levels, South Carolina state assessments (SC Ready and SC PASS) provide valuable information about the progress of learning for students in grades 3-8. Combining these assessments with the day-to-day use of observation, quizzes, tests, projects, and other learning activities, teachers monitor and support student learning through the year.

Secondary students continue their preparation for the global community by using college and career readiness standards identified by South Carolina, the College Board, and the ACT. Alignment of instruction is key to helping students make connections which are meaningful and long-lasting. For secondary students, helping them see the connections between their classes helps them become critical thinkers and problem solvers.

Extending opportunities for all students continues with the opportunity for all 8th grade students to complete their required Computer Science credit during the year in blended learning environments. By completing this requirement, all students enter high school with an additional chance to take another course.

District One offers all students a chance to reach their potential by equipping them with the technology and skills they need to create presentations, research new ideas, and collaborate with others on projects. We are so excited that all of our students in grades 3-12 have a Chromebook to promote their learning.

Every year, the Board of Trustees meet frequently to guide decisions that promote a sound, responsible foundation for all schools. Maintaining the grounds and buildings, along with providing tools for learning, require a plan that combines purpose and need in a responsible, organized way. On behalf of the students, faculty, and staff, I want to thank these dedicated individuals for their efforts.Thank you for your support of our students and district personnel each year. Our district will continue to work in partnership with parents and the school community to provide a truly exceptional learning environment. I am honored to serve as Superintendent of Spartanburg School District One. You can expect an exciting and productive 2017-2018 school year. Please let me know if I can assist you or your family in any way.



This summer, many students in District One took part in our #D1SummerWorkContest. Parents and students could enter the contest by liking and sharing our social media accounts, and sending in a picture of a D1 student either reading or completing summer work. Participants were then entered into a drawing for an Office Depot gift card to help with purchasing school supplies! We thoroughly enjoyed seeing our students enjoying their summer while also keeping their minds sharp!

District One Partners With Google & Digital Promise

Two schools in District One have been selected to join the pilot year of the Dynamic Learning Project, a national program supported by Digital Promise, EdTechTeam, and Google, aimed at improving education equity by empowering teachers to leverage technology in more powerful ways. Only 50 schools across the nation were chosen to participate in this program.

Both Landrum and Mabry Middle Schools were selected for the program by Digital Promise based on need (measured by the percentage of students eligible for free and reduced lunch), existing technology infrastructure, and innovative leadership committed to helping their teachers succeed. The Dynamic Learning Project will sponsor and train a coaching fellow for each school, who will provide personalized, tech-based coaching to help educators in their community leverage technology in transformative ways.

District One is pleased to announce that Mrs. Kelli Coons and Mrs. Christin Edge, both former classroom teachers, have been selected as the coaching fellows that will serve Landrum and Mabry Middle schools, respectively.

“We recognize the profound impact technology has on preparing today’s students for college and career readiness. Having two District One schools selected to participate in The Dynamic Learning Project is an honor and a testament to the innovative instructional practices that occur within our district. The technology coaching fellows afforded to us through this program will be an incredible asset to our students and teachers and will amplify our 1:1 technology initiative and enhance professional development opportunities,” said Dr. Ron Garner, Spartanburg District One Superintendent.

“It’s imperative that teachers are supported as they create new and powerful learning environments so students are prepared for the jobs of the future,” said Karen Cator, President and CEO of Digital Promise. “Early research studies point to the positive impact of educator coaching on teacher practices and student achievement. We’re thrilled to work with Google and the EdTechTeam, to bring the Dynamic Learning Project to Spartanburg School District One.”

Coaching fellows and principals at participating schools will:

  • Work with teachers to apply best practices in the powerful use of technology for teaching and learning;

  • Promote a culture of openness, personalized professional development, and continuous improvement between faculty and administration; and

  • Engage with other coaching fellows and their principals to share knowledge and build a community of support.

The Dynamic Learning Project officially welcomed the 2017-2018 cohort coaches and principals at a week-long Summer Institute hosted by Digital Promise at the Google headquarters in Mountain View, CA.  

“At Google, we believe in the power of educators. Technology is just a tool; it can only be transformative when it's in the hands of an educator who uses it to create meaningful experiences for students,” said Liz Anderson, Head of Social Impact Programs at Google for Education. “We’re excited to support such a dedicated group in laying the groundwork for innovative use of technology in classrooms across the country."

STEAM Is Rising In District One

Arts Education Partners, Spartanburg School District One and Chapman Cultural Center, received national recognition for their innovative STEAM practices by being invited to present at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts Partners in Education Annual Conference in Washington, D.C.

Mrs. Ava Hughes, Education Director of Chapman Cultural Center and Mrs. Cindy Riddle, Coordinator of Visual and Performing Arts for Spartanburg School District One, presented an innovative and interactive session on STEAM as part of the annual Kennedy Center Partners in Education Professional Development Program. Their presentation, Mining the Relationship Between STEM and STEAM, was an integrated forum that provided innovative STEAM challenges for participants as they engaged in the necessary thinking and practices reflective of the 21st century. According to Mrs. Cindy Riddle, “developing multiple partnerships with local business, arts organizations, community organizations, and schools provides a continuous pathway for arts education and STEAM.” As evidence, the Chapman Cultural Center was host to an unprecedented gathering of South Carolina industry leaders at the Breaking Down Barriers Arts and Industry Collide South Carolina’s Summit on STEM Education. South Carolina’s Coalition for Mathematics and Science (SCCMS) and the South Carolina Afterschool Alliance joined together to bring a new opportunity for networking, dialog, and information to thought and action leaders from all across the state.

STEAM education provides an opportunity for students to experience science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics as they would in a career setting where all the components are infused in both creative expressions and problem solving situations based on the South Carolina standards. Schools in District One seek to transform instruction with hands on, transdisciplinary curriculum, encouraging creative young adults that will have the capability to solve problems, contribute to community and the world.

The time has come to begin making your lists and checking them twice. School supply lists, that is. The link above is your one stop shop for all student registration information, including school supplies, important forms, dates, and more!

We are looking forward to a great start to the new school year!

1st Annual Community Back To School BASH!
On August 20th from 2-5 p.m., Gramling United Methodist Church is hosting its FIRST EVER Community Back To School Bash! Multiple agencies from around Spartanburg County have partnered together to provide families with assistance such as free school supplies, health screenings, access to resources, and more. This is a fun family experience for everyone, including free ice cream, music, and even the chance to dunk the Superintendent in a dunking booth! Don't miss out on this wonderful opportunity!

Both Landrum and Chapman High Schools are excited to announce that they can now accept debit and credit card payments for student fees! All schools have the ability to pay lunch balances online through My Payments Plus by clicking here. 

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