IRMO – Two School District Five schools have been named as one of 9 finalists for the 2019 Palmetto’s Finest School award.

River Springs Elementary School and Spring Hill High School Career Pathways Magnet were selected after extensive evaluations by fellow educators and previous Palmetto’s Finest winners. The schools are now undergoing a second onsite evaluation.

Last fall, 18 South Carolina schools submitted a 20-page application followed by an onsite examination visit from a review committee. The application process includes elements on student achievement, instructional programs, professional learning communities and school culture.

“Palmetto’s Finest is a rigorous annual competition highlighting public schools,” said School District Five Superintendent Dr. Christina Melton.  “With each phase of this competition, peer evaluators from across the state review the entire school program of each applicant.  Both River Springs Elementary and Spring Hill High are commended for their pursuit to seek external feedback for the quality of their programs. For School District Five to have two finalists is a celebration for our entire district.”

The South Carolina Association of School Administrators (SCASA) presents the awards each year to schools which offer the best in innovative, effective educational programs. The Palmetto’s Finest award is celebrating its 41st year and is one of the most coveted and respected awards among educators.

“The entire River Springs Elementary family is excited to be named as a finalist for the Palmetto’s Finest Award,” said River Springs Elementary School principal Melanie Cohen.  “This is a testament to the work that takes place at our school to help our students learn and grow every single day. We are excited to continue the Palmetto’s Finest journey!”

“It is quite an honor for Spring Hill High School to be named as a Palmetto’s Finest finalist,” said Spring Hill High School principal Dr. Michael Lofton.  “I am extremely proud of the thoughtful work and determination of our Spring Hill High School family as we go through this award process.”

“We are excited to recognize some of the outstanding and innovative schools in South Carolina,” said Beth Phibbs, SCASA Executive Director. “They represent the many excellent school communities serving South Carolina’s families.”

Winners will be announced on Tuesday, March 19, 2019.

SCASA, the professional organization for school leaders in South Carolina, has more than 4,300 members. From professional development opportunities and research, to publications and legislative advocacy, SCASA’s focus is to support school leaders in providing the best possible education for South Carolina’s young people.

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