New State Superintendent of Education Molly Mitchell Spearman, center, Fri., Jan. 30, visited the schools in her home district, Saluda Middle, Saluda High, Saluda Primary, Saluda Elementary and Hollywood Elementary.
Mrs. Spearman previously worked in Saluda County Schools as a music teacher and assistant principal. This photo was taken on her visit to Saluda Primary School.
Mrs. Spearman said she was very impressed with the local schools and would share some of the ideas implemented here with schools throughout the state.
Pictured with her, L to R, are, back row: Saluda Mayor Amelia Herlong (a teacher for over 40 years), Saluda Schools Supt. Dr. David Mathis, Saluda Primary Principal Peggy Trivelas and the school’s second grade ambassadors, front, L to R, Jared Bridges, MyKenzi Rogers, Andie Stevens and Gavin Shealy. Links to more photos and television coverage may be found on the Saluda, South Carolina! :) Facebook page. (Standard-Sentinel photo)
Visits County Schools
By Mary Alice Quattlebaum
Saluda County Schools
On Friday, January 30, 2015, State Superintendent of Education, Molly Spearman visited her hometown of Saluda where she attended school.
Superintendent Spearman indicated that it was special to come back and visit the school where she taught and her own children attended and graduated. She explained that she knew she made the right choice in moving back to Saluda and raising her children in a diverse community. As a parent, past classroom music teacher, assistant principal, member of the House of Representatives, and Executive Director of the South Carolina Association of School Administrators, she has over 35 years of experience in education.
As Molly went from school to school visiting many classrooms, she spent time observing teachers and students during their instructional day. She indicated that she was impressed with Saluda being on the fore-front of education. “Although this is a rural, diverse community with a high poverty rate (approximately 90% of students are on free and reduced lunch), the district is ahead of the state averages in many areas,” she said.
Her message to students was to study hard, be kind to one another, and engage in extra-curricular activities in order to become a well-rounded individual. She added, “Employers are looking for employees with good communication skills, and strong work ethics.” As a former music teacher, State Superintendent Spearman addressed the needs of students having the opportunity to find fulfillment in different areas of learning and career choices.
Lessening federal mandates with more local control, flexibility, and options are important to her. She stated that she believes district school boards have the authority to make the best decisions for students.
It was a proud day for Saluda County, as our friend and now State Superintendent of Education Molly Spearman revisited schools in her hometown where she was able to experience first-hand the growth and needs of our schools. It is apparent that our Chief of Education is fighting for better schools and a brighter future for all children.
Members During Board Recognition Month
Each January the role of school boards receives special focus in South Carolina and throughout the country during National School Board Recognition Month recognizing the members of South Carolina’s local boards of education for their commitment to providing quality public education for South Carolina’s children.
Board members are the heart of the public in public education as they make decisions in the best interest of all children. Giving countless hours of their time to benefit students who attend schools in Saluda County, we salute our Board of Trustees for all their hard work and contributions that they have made to our community.
Members of Saluda County Schools Board of Education are: Christy Corley Nichols, Chair-person; James Holloway, Vice-Chairperson; Dr. Arlene Puryear, Secretary; Dr. Kathy Coleman, Sharon Holloway, Henry Herron, and CDR James Moore.
“These people unselfishly contribute their time and talents toward the advancement of public education,” Superintendent Dr. David Mathis said. “Even though we are making a special effort during January to show appreciation to our school board members, we recognize their contributions reflect a year-round commitment. Saluda County is truly blessed to have these people as board members.”
School Board members received special recognition at the January Board meeting where they were presented with a gift of appreciation by the district and schools and applauded for their commitment and dedication to the students of Saluda County Schools.