The Bobcat Blaze

February 11, 2022

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+++We Are AC Moore STRONG+++


Every AC Moore student will enter middle school reading at or above grade level.


We collaboratively empower students to be accountable and successful.


Passion: Embracing and nurturing our school community

Intentionality: Purposeful, Present, & Prepared

Accountability: Growth Over Ego

Student Pillars of Leadership: PreK - 2








Student Pillars of Leadership: 3rd - 5th









Principal's Message

Happy Friday Bobcat Families,

We have a wonderful week here in Bobcat Country! Kindness was in abundance throughout our building and I could not have been prouder. We also celebrated Mrs. Balthazor for National School Counseling Week this week. As always, please encourage your students to keep up that kindness every day, in every way.

This week our students began to play on their new playground equipment and loved every minute of it! Even I took a turn on the swings! We are thankful to Richland One Facilities Department for providing this beautiful addition to our school. Please stay tuned for information regarding a ribbon cutting ceremony sponsored by our PTO.

On Monday for Valentines Day we ask that if your teacher has requested goodies, please do not send in homemade items. Store bought items are preferred for safety reasons.

Interims will be available on February 16th. Our monthly virtual SIC meeting will take place on Wednesday February 16th as well at 3pm.

Please remember there is no school for students on Monday, February 21st due to a Professional Development Day for staff.

Have a wonderful, safe weekend! If you will be watching, enjoy the Super Bowl!

Principal's Message:


Important Dates and Upcoming Events


  • February 1-28........................................................Black History Month

  • Monday, February 21..............................................Professional Development Day (No Attendance for Students)


  • Tuesday, March 22.................................................End of the 3rd Nine Weeks

  • Friday, March 25....................................................Teacher Workday

  • Tuesday, March 29.................................................Report Cards Issued
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------------------School News------------------

---National School Counseling Week---

National School Counseling Week 2022 (#NSCW22) was this recognized this week, February 7-11, 2022, to focus public attention on the unique contribution of school counselors within U.S. school systems. National School Counseling Week, and event sponsored by ASCA, highlights the tremendous impact school counselors can have in helping students achieve school success and plan for a career. In recognition of National School Counseling Week, we would like to say a special thank you to our school counselor, Elizabeth Balthazor!

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Mrs. Balthazor has been our wonderful School Counselor for 23 years, with the last 16 being at A.C. Moore. In her role, she works closely with teachers, administration, and parents to support the development of students’ social/emotional growth, academic success, and career awareness. Mrs. Balthazor visits each classroom bi-weekly to teach topics related to feelings management, friendship skills, personal safety, decision making skills, conflict resolution, communication skills, positive growth mindset, self-regulation skills, and career awareness. Additionally, she dedicates time to all students for short-term individual counseling and small group counseling and teaches students the importance of being good citizens not only in our school community, but also in our larger community.

Kindness Week @ A.C. Moore

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Our Bobcats Took the Pledge!

During Kindness Week, our Bobcats dedicated extra awareness to the importance of being kind. Students were encouraged to look for opportunities to share kindness, care, and compassion with their Bobcat Community. Every Bobcat student took Bucket Filler's Pledge to show their dedication to filling the kindness buckets of others. Thank you to Mrs. Balthazor for organizing Kindness Week for our Bobcats.

In Celebration of Black History Month

Black History Month Theme 2022...

Black Health and Wellness

The theme for 2022 focuses on the importance of Black Health and Wellness. This theme acknowledges the legacy of not only Black scholars and medical practitioners in Western medicine, but also other ways of knowing (e.g., birthworkers, doulas, midwives, naturopaths, herbalists, etc.) throughout the African Diaspora. The 2022 theme considers activities, rituals and initiatives that Black communities have done to be well.

Black History Month Events in the Columbia Area

Black History Parade and Festival

Saturday, Feb. 26th, 1-5pm

2300 Greene Street

Columbia, SC

F.U.N.D.S., INC. presents the 17th annual statewide, Black History Parade and Festival. The parade starts at the corner of Hampton Street and Harden Street and the festival will be held at Martin Luther King, Jr. Park. There will be live entertainment, education, vendors, kid zone and more.

For more information, please contact or call 803-361-5470 or visit

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Thank You PTO!

A special thank you to our wonderful PTO for stocking the Bobcat Closet with the items collected during the PTO sponsored clothing drive! #OurPTORocks!

Congratulations to Nurse Jennifer Robinson...Our 22-23 Classified Employee of the Year!

The A.C. Moore family would like to congratulate Mrs. Jennifer Robinson for being selected to represent our school as the 22-23 Classified Employee of the Year! Mrs. Robinson was selected by her colleagues for not only her commitment to the health and safety of the students and families at A.C. Moore, but for also being an advocate for students' access to health care services and her dedication to the improving the learning potential of all Bobcats in the building!

Mrs. Robinson has been a School Nurse for nearly 10 years and she truly loves what she does! Mrs. Robinson states, "School nursing is unique. I am a community health nurse who works in a school setting. The #1 goal of a School Nurse is to keep students in the classroom learning in order to advance academic success, with the understanding that healthy children learn better! School Nurses bridge health care and education in a variety of ways, including care coordination, health promotion, and patient advocacy. We also work to ensure that schools are compliant with the guidelines issued by state and local health officials".

Mrs. Robinson is always willing to assist with children's health-related needs. She is available and has been an active part of the learning community at A.C. Moore for the past 2 years. When she is not working she enjoys spending time with her daughters and her husband.

Please join us in congratulating Nurse Jennifer Robinson for being selected as the 22-23

Classified Employee of the Year!

Free COVID-19 Test Kits

If you have not placed your order for 4 free rapid COVID-19 test kits through the government at the following website, please do so today! Every home in the U.S. is eligible to order 4 free at-home COVID-19 tests. Orders will usually ship in 7-12 days.

--Parent and Family Engagement Opportunities--

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Show Your Kindness...Be Inclusive!

As Kindness Week at A.C. Moore ends, the Special Olympics-Unified Champion Schools committee would like to thank the Bobcat family for their participation and efforts in making A.C. Moore a more inclusive community for students. It is our hope that our students with intellectual disabilities have felt an extra sense of belonging through acts of kindness and inclusion this week. Click the link below to learn more about the importance of inclusion and learn how your student can continue to show kindness through inclusion.

Inclusion Works!

Thank you for your support,

Special Olympics-Unified Champion Schools Committee

Unified Champion Schools

Hip-Hip Hooray! It is Now Time to Play!

On Tuesday, February 8th, students had partial access to the new playground equipment! The students were given the green light to begin utilizing the playground structures during recess. Check out the pics below!

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FREE Kinsa FLUency Thermometer

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Dear A.C. Moore Families,

I have great news for those of you who have not yet ordered your FREE Smart thermometer through the FLUency school health program. We have received a thermometer donation from Lysol and Kinsa that enables me to provide them to many of our staff members and families directly! They are on a first-come-first-served basis, so call or email me ASAP and I will send one home with your child (1 per family).

For those of you who have already received your thermometer, please activate it and join the A.C. Moore community. The mobile app is like having a nurse in your pocket, and the more of us that use it the more effective it will be!

Please let me know if you have any questions, and please take advantage of this wonderful opportunity!

Jennifer Robinson, RN

School Nurse


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Hello A.C. Moore families!

I wanted to make you aware that Richland One has a new partnership with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Foundation (CDCF). The CDCF is sending people to our schools to assist with Covid-related administrative duties (contact tracing, calling parents, filing, reporting, data collection, making copies, etc.). They are employees of the CDCF and volunteers of Richland One. Our volunteer will be here from 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. each Monday, beginning next week. Her name is Lace Redd and I have heard great things about her!

If Ms. Redd needs to contact you, she will do so from a school phone, so your caller ID will display a Richland One number. She will not have access to PowerSchool information, only names and phone numbers that I provide her with. She will be housed in an area outside of the school health clinic. Rest assured, Ms. Redd has been trained and properly vetted by the District and she will uphold the confidentiality required by her position. Please do not be hesitant to speak to her or respond to any of her Covid-related questions.

Feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns you may have.

Enjoy your weekend!

Jennifer Robinson, RN

School Nurse


Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine is available for children 5+

The Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine is now available for children age 5 and older! To schedule an appointment for your child to receive the vaccine, please visit the DHEC Vaccine Locator site or call your healthcare provider.

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Take A Look at Your Bobcats...

Engaged in Learning!

Overdue Library Books

Dear Parents/Guardians:

There are still quite a few books out from last school year and the 2019-2020 school year. I know these were very exceptional years, but please make every effort to locate and return those books to the library as soon as possible. Thank you for you help in maintaining our library collection of books!

Jessica Warren, Librarian

Water Stations

Please be informed that bottled water will no longer be available to students during the day. Our school is now equipped with water bottle refilling stations! Your student should pack a reusable water bottle daily for use at the refilling stations around the building.

Carline procedures

In an effort to maintain a safe arrival/dismissal and decrease the wait time for car riders, we would like to issue the following reminders:


  • Please be courteous to the other parents in the carline...remain in your vehicle to allow for a more efficient arrival procedure.
  • Pull as far forward as possible before allowing your student to exit the vehicle.
  • Have students prepared to exit the vehicle with masks on and bookbags ready prior to entering the drop-off area.
  • Students should exit the vehicle from the passenger side, along the sidewalk.
  • Students should walk along the sidewalk to the gate at the end of the sidewalk.
  • Students should not be allowed to exit the vehicle in between the parked cars.


  • Please be sure your child knows his/her car number.
  • Hang your car tag from your rearview mirror and be sure it is visible to the staff member on duty.
  • Please be courteous to the other parents in the carline...remain in your vehicle to allow for a more efficient dismissal procedure.
  • Pull forward as much as possible before allowing your student to enter the vehicle
  • If your student needs assistance with buckling into a seat or seatbelt, please move forward to the end of the carline before assisting your child.

Attention: YMCA Families

Good Afternoon AC Moore YMCA Families,

I hope this note finds you all well and you’ve had a great week.

I just wanted to pass along a quick note about YMCA pick-up on a weekly basis Tuesdays-Thursdays. When arriving to the school to pick up your child or children from the YMCA program can you all please park on the side of the road instead of the bus loop? There is after school tutoring (CRP) going on during these days and by parking in the bus loops it prohibits the busses from getting in the bus loop.

Thank you so much for your understanding and please let me know if you have any questions.


Matthew Taranto

Program Director

YMCA of Columbia

1447 Hampton Street

Columbia SC, 29201

(w) 803 799 9187; © 772 480 3942

-------------PTO News-------------

Teacher Appreciation Breakfast

Parents, please click on the banner below to sign up to provide items for the Teacher Appreciation Breakfast dates throughout the year.

----------WELLNESS WATCH----------

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A Commitment to Equity

Today more than ever, we must reexamine and redefine ‘health’ in a more equitable and inclusive way. Year-round partnership and service in communities is essential to creating safe, stable, and culturally responsive environments that support comprehensive well-being.

As we welcome February, Healthier Generation celebrates Black History Month and the Lunar New Year with resources to support visualization, youth and staff voice, and family traditions.

Celebrating Black Health and Wellness: Past, Present, and Future

Hear from three leaders in Black health and wellness as they share the role models who have impacted them, the lessons they have learned, and what gives them hope as they work towards a healthier future.

------------DISTRICT NEWS------------

Register for the 2022-2023 Pre-K Program Now!

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A Message from the Superintendent (January 10, 2022)

Dear Richland One Staff and Families:

The S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control (SCDHEC) issued updated COVID-19 guidance to school districts yesterday (January 9, 2022). The revised document includes updated vaccinated definitions; quarantine simplification; household close contact clarification; updates to at-home testing guidance; and the addition of an at-home attestation form. We have made changes to our protocols to reflect the latest guidance from SCDHEC (the PDF document below shows [in red] where the revisions to the previous protocols were made).

Quarantine days for persons who are considered close contacts of someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 will be reduced to 5 days for students and staff, as recommended by SCDHEC. Isolation days for persons who test positive for COVID-19 will remain 5 days (from the start of symptoms) for students and staff. If a student or staff member is exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms and tests negative, they do not have to isolate and can return to school/work. NOTE: In cases where COVID transmission is high, the 5 days of quarantine may be changed to 10 days, per SCDHEC.

Students and staff should stay at home if they are not feeling well.

The new protocol is outlined below:

Definition of Fully Vaccinated (Ages 5-17)

You are considered fully vaccinated if you have completed your primary vaccine series (two doses of Pfizer or Moderna vaccine or one dose of Johnson and Johnson vaccine), including an additional dose if immunocompromised, with at least two weeks since your last dose.

Definition of Maximally Vaccinated (18 years and older)

You are considered maximally vaccinated if you have completed your primary vaccine series, including an additional dose if immunocompromised, and you have had a booster shot if eligible.

Close Contacts: Vaccinated

If you are considered fully/maximally vaccinated and you have been identified as a close contact of someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, you may remain at school/work as long as you are asymptomatic. You are encouraged to take a COVID-19 test 5 days from the last day of contact with the positive person.

NOTE: Rapid tests are acceptable if you are symptomatic, and PCR tests are for persons who are asymptomatic and close contacts. Per SCDHEC, at-home tests are not accepted.

Close Contacts: Not Vaccinated

If you are considered not fully/maximally vaccinated and you have been identified as a close contact to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, you must quarantine and will be able to return to school/work after day 5 (i.e. you would return on day 6). You are encouraged to take a COVID-19 test no earlier than day 4 of quarantine.

NOTE: Rapid tests are acceptable if you are symptomatic, and PCR tests are for persons who are asymptomatic and close contacts. Per SCDHEC, at-home tests are not accepted.

Symptoms of COVID-19: Regardless of Vaccination Status

If you have COVID-19 symptoms, you will need to isolate for 5 days from the onset of symptoms. If you do not take a COVID-19 test, you can return to school/work after the 5 days of isolation, if your symptoms are significantly improving and you have not had a fever in 24 hours. If you do take a COVID-19 test and it is negative, or if you have an alternate diagnosis, you can return to school/work. If you continue to have symptoms, you should stay at home.

Positive COVID-19 Cases: Regardless of Vaccination Status

If you have tested positive for COVID-19, you will isolate for 5 days and you will be able to return to school/work after completion of your isolation period, as long as your symptoms are significantly improving and you have not had a fever in 24 hours.

At-Home Testing: At-home testing will be accepted, per recommendation by SCDHEC. If the test is not proctored by a health care provider, the individual (or parent/guardian) will be required to complete and submit the “At-Home Rapid Test Result Attestation Form in order for the results to be allowed to qualify an individual for isolation. Students and staff will follow the same isolation policy if the results are positive. They will be instructed to contact their health care provider for follow-up from the at-home test.

Mask Requirement

In all cases, students and staff will be required to wear masks when returning to school/work.

Our revised 2021-2022 COVID-19 Mitigation and Safety Protocols one-page summary is posted on our home page and our Restart Strong landing page. Again, thank you for your continued partnership and cooperation.


Craig Witherspoon, Ed.D.



Click the banner above for the most recent COVID-19 cases and quarantines in the district. The COVID-19 tracker is updated by 4 pm each evening.

21-22 COVID-19 Mitigation & Safety Protocols

Click the banner above to view the COVID-19 Mitigation and Safety Protocols (revised 1-10-2022).

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Read to Succeed

Read to Succeed

Attendance...What You Need to Know

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ThriveRichland Spark Time (Virtual ) Play Group

Richland School District One Student Technology Replacement Fees

-----Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)-----

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-Neighborhood News & Community Connections-

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Riverbanks Zoo is kicking off FREE FRIDAYS!

Big picture Offers Free, Real-time Tutoring for All South Carolina Residents

The South Carolina Department of Education and the South Carolina State Library (SCSL) have partnered with to address the continuing academic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. The partnership will span the next three years and is funded through the American Rescue Plan's Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ARP ESSER).

  • is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, for English and Spanish speakers.
  • Connect with a tutor on various subjects, such as math, science, language arts, social studies, world languages, computer literacy, and AP courses.
  • offers test prep assistance, skills coaching, and help with specific math and essay-writing questions.
  • Unlock even more features with a account. Creating a account is optional and not required to connect with a tutor.

Visit to get started. If you don't know the Discus login information, contact

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Free Tuition for Technical Colleges in South Carolina

Good afternoon,

Below are links about a recent educational opportunity in South Carolina that may be beneficial for high school students within the district and/or parents/caregivers within your school communities interested in continuing their education. This initiative, SC Workforce Scholarships for the Future, has been designated $17 million in GEER funding for the Spring semesters. The governor is asking Congress for an additional $24 million from the American Rescue Act funds to extend the program through June 2024.

This initiative allows any adult in South Carolina the opportunity to attend one of sixteen technical colleges for free if they choose to major in a high-demand career preparation program including: construction, nursing, manufacturing, technology, hospitality/tourism, and early care and education.

Links with more information:

· South Carolina technical colleges free tuition: how it'll work |

· McMaster: Pandemic cash for free 2-year degrees (

Hope this helps!

Laurann Gallitto Patel, MMFT

Lead Regional Family Engagement Liaison

Midlands Region


Carolina Family Engagement Center

College of Education

University of South Carolina

820 Main Street

Columbia, SC 29208

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UofSC String Project Information

The University of South Carolina String Project directed by Dr. Gail V. Barnes is the model for university string programs across the country. This nationally recognized program caters to children 3rd-5th grade & adults. Click above for more info.

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DHEC-Tour Health - Columbia

Dates and Times

Monday-Friday, 9:00 AM - 6:00 PM

Saturday and Sunday, 9:00 AM-4:00 PM


2221 Devine St, Columbia, South Carolina 29205, United States

Customer Service Number


Further Information

  • Pre-Registration Strongly Recommended but not required
  • Wait times at all sites vary and patients are seen in the order that they arrive.
  • Pre-registration will help to reduce your wait time at the site.

Appointment Needed: Call for details

Referral Needed: No

Pediatric Testing Available: Yes - All Ages

DHEC - Richland County Health Department

Dates and Times

Monday-Friday, 8:30-4:30

Further Information

  • **SELF ADMINISTERED COVID-19 Saliva Test Kits ONLY**
  • Pick up during normal business hours
  • No appointment needed

Referral Needed: No

Pediatric Testing Available: Yes

Free COVID-19 Vaccine Site

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DHEC-Tour Health - DHEC Parking Lot

Dates and Times

Monday-Friday, 9:00 AM-6:00 PM

Saturday and Sunday, 9:00 AM-4:00 PM


2600 Bull St, Columbia, South Carolina 29201, United States

Further Information

  • Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines are now available at this testing site.
  • Preregistration is highly recommended, but not required.
  • You can register for a vaccination appointment at
  • Wait times at all sites vary and patients are seen in the order that they arrive.
  • Pre-registration will help to reduce your wait time at the site.

Appointment Needed: yes
Referral Needed: No