A Check on All Things Excellent
MCSD Opening Convocation
Marion County School District kicked off the 2022-2023 school year for staff with an Opening of Schools Convocation at Amazing Grace Park in Marion Tuesday, July 26, 2022. Schools decorated tents, created cheers and chants and committed themselves to a year of loving and teaching the students of Marion County. Marion High School’s ROTC opened by presenting the colors and Ms. Michelle White from Florence Darlington Technical College sang the National Anthem. Dr. Jermaine Ford, President of Florence Darlington Technical College delivered the keynote speech. He provided the staff with words of inspiration aligned to the school district’s new five year Strategic Plan. Dr. Kandace Bethea introduced the theme for the school year “Cultivating Excellence is our Superpower” which was portrayed on the shirts staff wore to the event.
Visitors included local elected official and school board members along with Reverend Brian Preveaux from Macedonia Methodist Church in Mullins who lead Invocation. Local vendors provided treats such as iced coffees, donuts, and Kona ice to staff before and after the event to enjoy as they kicked of the 22-23 school year.
The district’s annual Roll Call was led by Marion Intermediate’s Principal, Mr. Robert Dunkin and the winner was announced by Senator Kent Williams. The judges had a difficult job choosing the winner with schools bringing their best cheers and songs. In the end, Mullins High School brought home the win for the second year in a row. They remain the Spirit Award winners for the 2022-2023 school year. Marion County School District is looking forward to a year filled with continued growth and success! Cultivating Excellence is our Superpower!
MCSD's Focus on Instruction
During the 2021-2022 school year Marion County School District observed academic growth on assessments required of our students throughout the school year. As we continue to make positive strides, we acknowledge the necessity for continued academic growth. To support student growth, our Instructional Leadership Teams are working actively with teachers through instructional coaching, monitoring data, and using the data to make daily informed instructional decisions. Teachers participate in weekly common planning activities and evidence-based PLCs to promote teacher-driven, student-focused practices. We are confident that continuing this level of support will lead to significant student growth and achievement. This year the district has transitioned from using the Measures of Academic Progress or MAP assessment to using I-Ready. I-Ready will keep our teachers and adminisistrators better informed of student growth, continued progress and areas of student challenge so targeted individual and small group instruction can better meet their learning needs in the classroom.
This year, as part of the state’s Palmetto Project, the South Carolina Department of Education will partner with Marion County School District and many others across the state to offer LETRS Training to our K-3 teachers and principals. LETRS professional development is job-embedded and based on the science of reading and provides the tools to improve teacher literacy practices. Training teachers and administrators in literacy instruction is imperative to see achievement in the district improve as we continue to feel the effects from Covid, virtual instruction, and many new teachers in classrooms.
The summer of 2022 brought much to look forward to for the 22-23 school year. Creek Bridge STEM Academy was been awarded $14,000 in grant funds to use for STEM and Project Lead the Way. They were chosen as an expansion partner with the Original Six Foundation as an after-school site location. The Johnakin Middle School Beta Club represented Marion County School District at the National Convention in Nashville, Tennessee after winning at the state convention earlier this year in Myrtle Beach. With district summer academic and arts programs and community athletic camps available for our students and training opportunities for our teachers and administrators we are confident Marion County School District students and staff are ready for an excellent school year. This year “Cultivating Excellence is our Superpower”!
MCSD Expands Partnership with Florence Darlington Technical College
Marion County School District has expanded their partnership with Florence Darlington Technical College to offer additional opportunities to the students in Marion County School District. The students from Marion and Mullins High School have new options for the 2022-2023 school year such as Machine Tooling, the Early Childhood Certificate Program, and a Medical Terminology program. The Academy for Careers and Technology is also home to a state approved Firefighter Certification program. Students also have options such as the Early College Program and Dual Credit offerings and other traditional program offerings at the Academy for Careers and Technology. For a complete listing of programs at ACT visit https://www.marion.k12.sc.us/Page/35.
MCSD is excited to offer these opportunities to our students at the Academy for Careers and Technology. For questions please call Mr. Michael Stone at 843-423-1941.
Marion County School District Salary Study On the Way
Marion County School District has made a committment over time to show employees they are valued for their hard work and loyalty to stay and work here in Marion County. The district is eager to obtain the results of the salary study which will conclude this month. Each year MCSD makes efforts to increase pay scales across job categories just as they do for teacher salary scales. The goal is to strategically plan to gradually close the gaps seen across pay scales. The efforts in making the changes recommended in the salary study cannot happen overnight but we hope our employees notice we are working hard to make changes where we can to impact their salary over time.
Marion County School District has earned system accreditation by Cognia™, a nonprofit organization that provides quality assurance for schools, school districts, and education service providers.
Cognia, formerly AdvancED, nationally recognizes districts that meet rigorous standards that focus on productive learning environments, equitable resource allocation that meet the needs of learners, and effective leadership. Earning accreditation from the Cognia Global Accreditation Commission means that the system and all of its schools are accredited, and that Marion County School District is recognized across the nation as a school system that meets Cognia Standards of Quality, and maintains a commitment to continuous improvement.
“Systems accreditation as conferred by the Cognia Global Accreditation Commission provides Marion County School District a nationally recognized mark of quality for our school system and each school within our system,” shared Dr. Kandace Bethea. “It demonstrates to our community our commitment to excellence, our openness to external review and feedback, and our desire to be the best we can be on behalf of the students we serve.”
Principals for the 2022-2023 School Year
Academy for Careers and Technology- Mr. Michael Stone
Academy of Early Learning- Mrs. Farrah Owens
Creek Bridge STEM Academy- Dr. Lashay Barksdale
Easterling Primary School- Mrs. Melinda Tavernier
Johnakin Middle School- Mr. Mark Frasier
Marion Intermediate School- Mr. Robert Dunkin
Marion High School- Mrs. Rita Lewis- Smith
McCormick Elementary School- Mr. Shawn Perry
Mullins High School- Mr. Joey Smith
North Mullins Primary School- Ms. Kimberly Fogan
Palmetto Middle School- Dr. Regina Gilchrist
The Success Academy- Mr. Daryl Woodberry
Adult Education- Mrs. Candyce Brooks
*Bolded names indicate new school administrators
MCSD's Board of Education Welcomes Back Staff and Students
Do you know a Marion County Superhero?
Marion County School's Superheros
Do you know a former Marion County School student that is a success story? Did they graduate and go on to do GREAT things wherever they landed? Do you know a current student still enrolled in a Marion County School that has a phenomenal story to tell of something they have overcome to be successful?