Category Archives: Anderson District One

District One “Excellent” on State Report Card

Anderson School District One is one of seven districts in the state to earn an Excellent rating on performance and growth on the State Report Card ratings. It is the fifth year in a row to eard the Excellent rating and the District placed 5th placed in the state for student achievement.

The district also earned an Excellent for growth. Thirteen schools in Anderson One schools earned excellent ratings, while one school earned a good rating. Anderson One is extremely proud of the high graduation rate of 90.8 for 2014. It increased from 86.9 in 2013.

Referendum to decide penny sales tax – for education

If approved –  Will increase security, make improvements,
reduce property tax in School District One

By David Meade

Voters in School District One will have the opportunity to vote yes or no on a referendum which provides for a one cent sales and use tax which will provide funding for specific capital improvements for local schools.

The goal of the sales tax is to reduce property tax and debt service and provide school improvement funds.

The 2014 SC Education Capital Improvements Sales and Use Tax Act requires all districts to use 10 percent of the proceeds to reduce property taxes by offsetting the existing debt service on general obligation bonds.

Penny Sales Tax Referendum on Ballot

School District One get an “A”

Anderson School District One was ranked number 5 among 11 districts in the state with Federal Report Card Rating of “A” which was released Tuesday. The Elementary and Secondary Education Act Federal Accountability System, known as the federal report card, scores each school and district based on test scores, attendance and graduation rates.

Anderson One’s 2014 graduation rate increased from 86.9 to 91.8, the fourth highest in the state following York 4, Barnwell 29 and Calhoun.

David Havird, Superintendent of Anderson One, and the district office challenged the district to improve the graduation rate from 86.9 to 90. The teachers and administration took the challenge and met the goal. For the first time, the graduation rate is 90.8.

Havird said, “It is almost impossible to reach 90% for graduation rate but our district has focused heavily on helping more students become successful by receiving a diploma. Graduation coaches are in place to support the students at risk of dropping out. They identify at-risk students, develop intervention plans and provide resources to the school and community. This has had a very positive impact on our district.”


Wren High Graduation Coach, Kathy Kaminska and Palmetto High Graduation Coach Amy McKee are advocates for the students and act as a liaison between teachers, parents, administrators, counselors, and students to build school-wide rapport, communication, and support from all stakeholders in order to increase the success of the identified students.

Ms. Kaminska said, “The positive impact of the Graduation Coach is truly realized when an at-risk student attains a high school diploma and can make the following comment:

“It’s like having a parent at school that cares. It’s a good thing because if [he/she] wasn’t here, I wouldn’t be graduating. I guess [she/he] puts things in perspective that makes me care about school and makes me come to school.”

Ms. McKee said, “This reciprocal relationship builds self-respect, self-esteem, and self-reliance in the student and also validates the value and merit of the positive impact that the Graduation Coach has on a student’s achievement, success, and future.”

Anderson One’s High Schools had the 3rd highest score for ELA in the state following York 4 and Lexington 5

Anderson One’s High Schools were 4th in the state for Math and Social Studies; Anderson One tied for 5th place in the state in Science

West Pelzer Elementary, Title I School, was one of 11 schools in the state to score 100.

All three Title I schools in Anderson One (Cedar Grove Elementary, Palmetto Elementary, West Pelzer Elementary) were named Reward Schools for Performance, the highest performing Title I schools for 2014.

Of the 38 primary schools in the state, Concrete Primary was ranked 1st in the state for Social Studies performance, 2nd in the state for ELA and math Performance and 3rd for Science.

Wren High was the 16th top high school in the state after mostly charter schools. Compared to other high schools similar to them, they were 4th in the state beating Fort Mill High, Chapin High, Landrum High, and Lewisville High.

Jane Harrison, Superintendent for Instruction, said “We believe the education of our students is extremely important and we take it very seriously. We make available to our teachers quality professional development and they in-turn provide high level instruction in the classroom. We want and expect our students to be prepared and competitive at each grade level but especially when they leave our district for college or the work place. The federal accountability results are a clear indication that Anderson One is maintaining our tradition of excellence.”

District One students second in state on SAT

Students at Wren High, Palmetto High and Powdersville High rank second overall in South Carolina on the nation’s most recognized college entrance examination, the SAT, with a total of 1515, up from 1492 in 2013. The scores topped state and national averages. 

Anderson School District One’s 2014 overall score made up of Critical Reading, Math, and Writing sections, was 1515. This is 44 points above the national average of 1471 and 81 points above the state average of 1429. Anderson One improved in two areas of the test from the previous year increasing Critical Reading scores by 14 points and Writing by 10 points for a 23 point gain.

Technology, mentoring having impact in District One schools

By Daivd Meade

During their meeting Tuesday, Anderson School District One Board members were updated on the District’s IPad technology instruction, a Mentoring program and the one cent sales tax referendum.

Associate Superintendent and Director of Instruction Jane Harrison showed an example of use of the new IPad technology with a movie trailer format book report put together by a student.

Harrison said district personnel received a week of training on the Airwatch filtering software being used with the IPads. The program includes content filtering and teacher tools and applications including an “All eyes on me” app with bring attention of students on IPads “back to the teacher”. Harrison reported staff development including 100 sessions on new apps and how to better use them.

She said student achievement has already risen and students are having to do the work with the new technology. There have been numerous instances of non motivated students now being very motivated, Harrison said. The technology is also allowing special education students to reach more goals, she said.

Kenny Gilliland, President of APEX Ventures, LLC, presented information on a mentoring program he is heading in Anderson District One.

Gilliland, who also works with the FRaZEE Dream Center in Greenville, is partnering with local business, churches and civic organizations and individuals on the mentoring program which works with struggling students.

District One students perform well on EOC Exam assessments

End of Course scores were recently released by the State Department of Education. Anderson District One students performed well on all 2013-14 EOCEP assessments.

Students scored well enough to secure the third highest score in the state on the Algebra I assessment with 96.8 percent passing, up from 93.6 last year. This well surpasses the state average of 85.5 percent.

US History scores for Anderson One improved significantly from 2013 to 2014. The percentage of students passing the test went from 73.9 in 2013 to 80.1 passing the assessment for 2014, the fourth highest score in the state.

Bertram named District One Teacher of the Year

Jennifer Bertram, an English teacher at Wren High School is the Anderson District One Teacher of the Year, and will represent the district for the 2014-2015 school year. As the district’s Teacher of the Year, Bertram will represent District One in the competition for South Carolina Teacher of the Year.

She will serve on a state-wide advisory panel to the State Department of Education and will receive $1,000 in recognition of her outstanding achievements.

Technology Rollout underway

By David Meade

Anderson School District One is in the process of introducing its Digital Innovation – Transform, Discover, Excel initiative which includes a technology rollout of more than 7000 iPads.

The rollout has teachers and students excited about receiving school supplied iPads which will be used in the classroom and at home. The rollout began at Powdersville High School at the start of classes last Wednesday (Aug. 20) and at Palmetto High on Thursday (Aug. 21).

Principals and teachers have already had training on use of the new technology and parents are being required to come for instruction session prior to iPads being issued to students, Assistant Superintendent Jane Harrison said.

The rollout includes training, use guidelines and digital citizenship classes for students. The rollout includes issuing 7420 iPads along with training and use of related applications (Apps) which will be used for learning in the classroom this school year.

Student enrollment tops 9600

By David Meade

During their regular Monthly meeting Tuesday, Anderson School District One Board members were updated on the start of school and the new Digital Initiative and technology rollout.

Superintendent David Havird said the District had 9588 students enrolled as of last Friday and more than 9600 by Tuesday. Havird said the District had 156 new students enroll last year and expects 160 to 200 this year.

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