Wolfe Selected to Hall of Fame

Wolfe Selected to Hall of Fame
Spartanburg School District 7 is proud to announce that longtime educator John “Bubba” Wolfe, whose diligent efforts and unassuming leadership style have helped create phenomenal success in Spartanburg High School’s swimming program, will be inducted into the South Carolina Swimming Coaches Association (SCSCA) Hall of Fame during the Class AAAA State Finals Friday, October 13, 2017 in Columbia, SC.
Wolfe’s reputation in his chosen field borders on legendary. Mr. Wolfe, has dedicated more than four decades of his life to Spartanburg High School as a teacher and a guidance counselor, and from 1997-2010 as the head swim coach for the Vikings. Wolfe didn’t just coach the school’s swim team to astronomical success; he was basically responsible for there even being a team at all. Wolfe was a main influence in bringing back the school’s swimming program in 1997 after it had been dormant for 15 years.
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Dance Teacher and Advocate Honored

Dance Teacher and Advocate Honored
Susan Woodham’s desire for students to experience life through dance is profound and contagious to everyone she meets.
District 7 is pleased to announce Ms. Woodham is the recipient of the prestigious Ray Doughty Arts Integration Award, given by The Palmetto State Arts Education Organization each year to honor an individual who embodies the true spirit of arts integration through the successful utilization of community partnerships and resources.
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A Day of Inspiration with We Are Charleston Authors

A Day of Inspiration with We Are Charleston Authors
What is poetry? Pablo Neruda thought it this way: “Poetry is an act of peace.” It’s safe to say that South Carolina Poet Laureate Marjory Wentworth would agree and also espouse is perhaps our greatest resource in a time of crisis. Poems help us make sense of the world around us, particularly when we are feeling overwhelmed with emotions. It is not surprising, then, that during the days following the Emanuel AME Church shooting, The Post and Courier asked Wentworth to write a commemorative poem. Wenworth’s poem so powerfully consoled families and helped others express their grief and outrage that she was encouraged to write more.
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Students Exceed National and State Averages on SAT and Record Top Pass Rates on AP

Students Exceed National and State Averages on SAT and Record Top Pass Rates on AP
The first year of performance results on the revised SAT®, released today, set a new baseline for the state after the College Board overhauled the exam with changes that lowered the maximum score to 1600, eliminated obscure vocabulary words, dropped the penalty for guessing and made the essay optional. The high school graduating class of 2017 marked the first time a majority of students tested under the redesigned format. The College Board reported Spartanburg High School’ s graduating class of 2017 posted an average score of 1078 on the new SAT exam – 24 points above the national public school average and 20 points above the state’s. Approximately 40% of the senior class took the SAT. District 7’s average passage rate on Advanced Placement (AP) tests jumped to 83% (up from an impressive 79% last year), and is well above the state and national passage rate – and one of the highest in the state.
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Authors of “We Are Charleston” Included In Literacy Program

District 7 kicks off the 11th year of 7Reads next Monday, September 25 with a week-long event that encourages the joy of reading. The District will host the winner of the 2016 ILA Young Adult Book Award, the Poet Laureate of South Carolina, and the authors of a compelling new book titled We Are Charleston. The celebrated authors, illustrators and poets include; Tim Davis, Herb Frazier, Jessica Khoury, Sonia Leverette, Melinda Long, Bernard Edward Powers Jr., Lance Rubin, and Marjory Wentworth. Children in every school within the District will have the opportunity to hear from one or more of the featured authors.
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SHS Leads the Area in National Merit Semifinalists with Eight

SHS Leads the Area in National Merit Semifinalists with Eight
Eight academically talented seniors from Spartanburg High School have been named semifinalists in the 2018 National Merit Scholarship program. DeHaven Dickerson, Ethan Durham, Matthew Evans, Louise Franke, Nan Miles, Georgia Price, Jay Stevens, and Ashley Wade are among 217 students encompassing public, private, and homeschools across South Carolina to achieve the national distinction, according to officials at the National Merit Scholarship Corporation. Spartanburg High School has more National Merit Semifinalists than any other school, public or private, in the county. READ MORE
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Annual Back to School Rally Is a Tweet Success

Annual Back to School Rally Is a Tweet Success
Every August, before the first day of school, District 7 rolls out the red carpet to welcome faculty and staff back for another year. The annual 7Shares convocation is part pep-rally, part part-professional development and part-good ol’ fashioned fun. Filling the gym at Spartanburg High School, more than 1200 employees from all 14 schools in the District gathered together on Monday, August 14 to meet and mingle with one another, to engage in professional learning opportunities and to share their hopes and goals for the new school year.
Greeted with a rousing welcome from Superintendent Russell Booker and a shout-out for every school in the District, the crowd was also treated to a fabulous performance by Spartanburg High School’s glee club students who call themselves, The Corporation. To add to the fun and fuel excitement about the first day of school on Thursday, August 17 – teachers in the audience seized the power of social media to highlight the day’s happenings. From one Tweet to another, the D7 team took to the airwaves to shares smiles, salute students and celebrate community. (#7Shares)
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Back to School for Cleveland Academy

Back to School for Cleveland Academy
Cleveland Academy of Leadership kicked off a new school year on July 11 with a Back to School Celebration complete with school supplies, food, fun and a host of community partners welcoming families to the school.
From 3pm to 6pm the school was be buzzing with activity as parents and students met their teachers, picked up new backpacks and uniforms, and visited with service and support providers in the community.
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Dog Days of Summer

Dog Days of Summer
The dog days of summer are alive and well on Monday morning as students build their reading skills while bonding with adoptable dogs that are always willing to lend an ear. The program is in partnership with the Spartanburg Humane Society and is part of the State Department’s Read To Succeed initiative, which has a goal of all students becoming proficient readers by the end of third grade.
Jennifer Dowis, the Summer Reading Camp Coordinator, notes the program is proving to be a huge success. Before camp started two weeks ago, many of the young readers didn’t feel good about reading aloud, according to Dowis. Now they feel more confident in their reading skills and also feel safe when reading to a dog. Though the children believe they are teaching the dogs to read, in fact, with the dog as the attentive audience (and an occasional assist from the volunteer partner), they are actually teaching themselves. According to the children, however, reading is about the dog, not about them. No embarrassment. No pressure.
The premise is that good dogs are good medicine and that the dogs will continue to help children become better readers for many years to come.
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New Principal Appointments

Spartanburg School District Seven announced today the appointment of Ms. Katrina Johnson Robinson as Principal of E.P. Todd School effective July 1, 2017. Ms. Robinson will assume Charlene Doctor’s position, as Ms. Doctor moves to the Early Learning Center at Park Hills to become the Executive Director.
The District also announced the appointment of Mr. Thomas Webster as Principal of the new elementary school in the Drayton Mills community, effective July 1, 2017. The new school, which is currently under construction, will serve students from Houston and Chapman Elementary Schools and is scheduled to open in fall 2018.
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Wordmaster Competition Spells NATIONAL Success for 3rd Grade Team

Wordmaster Competition Spells NATIONAL Success for 3rd Grade Team
All year long, Ms. Susan Holcombe’s third-grade ODYSSEY class has worked diligently to become adept at solving analogies for the 30th annual WordMasters Challenge. To say the least, they took the competition by storm, winning first place in the nation in the Gold Division for year-end cumulative standings among thousands of other students in the country. The 3rd grade ODYSSEY team comprised of students representing E.P Todd School, Pine Street, Mary H. Wright, and Meeting Street Academy placed first in the nation among 112 teams in the WordMasters Challenge Gold Division.
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Spartanburg High ranked among America’s top high schools

Spartanburg High ranked among America’s top high schools
For the 6th consecutive year, SHS has been named by The Washington Post as one of America’s Most Challenging High Schools. SHS is one of 11 in the state to make the Post’s annual list, which identifies high schools that are excelling in preparing students for college-level work. The news magazine collected data on more than 22,000 schools for the report, which for the second time time included graduation rates as a factor in the rankings.
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Luke Martin Named US Presidential Scholars Semifinalist

Luke Martin Named US Presidential Scholars Semifinalist
When Luke Martin puts on his cap and gown for graduation in two weeks, he’s likely to blend in with the rest of his classmates. But, as anyone who knows him will tell you, Luke Martin stands in a class of his own. With a stellar academic career at Spartanburg High School and a resume of accomplishments that reflects his prowess in and out of the classroom, Martin can also claim the distinction of being named one of only 17 semifinalists in South Carolina to be singled out for the nation’s prestigious United States Presidential Scholars Program.
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Graduating Senior Point to What’s Next

Graduating Senior Point to What’s Next
Each year, our graduates are accepted by some of the nation’s most prestigious colleges and universities and this year’s class is no exception. Our 2017 Vikings are headed for such notable schools as Centre College, Clemson, Converse, Davidson, Duke, Furman, Georgetown, Oxford College at Emory, Pratt, Sewanee, UCLA, UNC Chapel Hill, University of Pennsylvania, University of Richmond, University of South Carolina, University of Tennessee, Vanderbilt, Wake Forest, Washington and Lee, Wheaton and Wofford College, just to name a few.
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Deputy Superintendent Terry Pruitt Honored by SCASA

Deputy Superintendent Terry Pruitt Honored by SCASA
Dr. Terry Pruitt will wear a new title for the coming academic year after being named today as the 2017 South Carolina District Level Administrator of the Year. Pruitt, who serves as the Deputy Superintendent, was honored this week by SCASA.
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A Hero’s Welcome for Navy ET Orner

A Hero’s Welcome for Navy ET Orner
It was nothing short of a hero’s welcome for Navy Petty Officer Taylor Orner when he arrived at Pine Street School and joined Ms. Susan Holcombe’s third-grade ODYSSEY class on Thursday, April 27. After months of sending letters, the students were finally able to take turns asking the 25-year-old Navy electronics technician questions. The class had been writing to Orner where he is stationed in Bahrain.
Orner expressed his appreciation that the children from Pine would take the time to write and said their support had been invaluable. And as for the kids themselves and the impression made by Oner’s visit, the exuberance in their voices and in their eyes said it all.
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Terrific Kids!

Terrific Kids!
Students representing elementary schools across Spartanburg County were recognized for their good character and citizenship during the Kiwanis Club’s 27th annual Terrific Kid of the Year luncheon. The honorees from D7 are: Neo Smales, The Early Learning Center; Fernando Zarate-Rodriguez, Chapman; Jamaria Tinsley, Cleveland Academy; Chloe Parrot, EP Todd; McKayla Williams, Houston; Devin Phipps, Jesse Boyd; D’Jonai Jones, Mary Wright; Jy’Keya Spearman, Pine Street; and Maia Henley, Terrell Edwards, and Jacob Sutherland, McCarthy-Teszler.
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Spring Signing Day

Spring Signing Day
Five Spartanburg High School athletes - Spencer Ashby, Garrett Scharff, Spencer Brown, Arpit Rana, and Omar Williams - made decisions yesterday when they committed to the college and/or university where they wanted to continue their academic and athletic training.
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Spartanburg County Foundation Honors Dr. Gloria Close

Spartanburg County Foundation Honors Dr. Gloria Close
Like one of Horatio Alger’s coming-of-age novels, Dr. Gloria Close has a life story that would make for an inspiring movie. Recently honored with the prestigious Mary L. Thomas Award by the Spartanburg County Foundation, Dr. Close, who has been a District 7 educator for 15 years, was recognized for decades of service and a quiet determination to help homeless families in the community.
As one of six children, raised by parents who worked in a cotton mill, Close says she remembers what it was to be poor. At an early age, she knew education would be her “ticket to opportunity.” That relentless determination motivated Close to obtain a masters and doctoral degree from North Carolina State University and the University of North Carolina. She continues her accomplished career as an advocate for others and a champion for children. Read More for Video
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State Testing Begins April 12

State Testing Begins April 12
Beginning April 12 students in 3rd through 8th grade will participate in the South Carolina College-and Career-Ready Assessments (SC READY) are statewide assessments in English language arts (ELA) and mathematics. The SC READY test items are aligned to the standards for each subject and grade level. Standards specify what schools are expected to teach and what students are expected to learn. Academic standards also include indicators that are statements of the specific cognitive processes and the content knowledge and skills that students must demonstrate to meet the grade-level standards. SC READY test items are written to assess the content knowledge and skills described in the academic standards and indicators. These tests will become part of each student’s permanent school record and are used for class placement in Middle and High School. The results will also be used for school and school district accountability purposes. Parents your cooperation is needed for students to perform to the best of their ability:
• Please see that your child gets plenty of rest on the nights before the test.
• Please see that your child eats a nourishing breakfast on the morning of these tests.
• Please make every effort to have your child in school and on time.

Dr. Booker Talks About the Future During District Address

Dr. Booker Talks About the Future During District Address
On the stage at the Chapman Cultural Center Superintendent Russell Booker said the state of the district is strong as teachers, students and administration leaders look toward the future. During his sixth State of the District address on March 30, 2017 to nearly 200 business leaders, educators, parents and key stakeholders, Dr. Booker underscored the successes of the District and highlighted the exciting plans underway. “There is such momentum now,” he said. “I think the best way to really let the community know what’s going on is to get in front of them. It’s a whole lot more effective than sending some paper home.”
Dr. Booker took key stakeholders and friends of the District through an informative update underscoring accomplishments throughout the academic year, along with test scores, and updates on the new Spartanburg High School and elementary school. Read More for Video
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D7 releases its 2017-2018 School Calendar

D7 releases its 2017-2018 School Calendar
The calendar has teachers returning on Friday, August 11 and students starting classes on Thursday, August 17, 2017. The last day of the school year for students will be June 1, 2018.
While South Carolina normally prohibits the first day of school prior to the third Monday in August, the legislature granted an exception to the rule this year only due to the total solar eclipse forecast for Monday, August 21, 2017.
In most districts throughout the Upstate school will be closed for students on Monday, August 21, the day of the solar eclipse. This will allow families the opportunity to experience this once-in-a-lifetime phenomenon however they choose to do so. Read More to download
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Boy’s Tennis Keeps Rolling

Boy’s Tennis Keeps Rolling
The Spartanburg Boys Tennis Team defended its Deco-Turf High School National Team Title on March 25 in Chattanooga, Tenn. Sixteen teams from 14 states were represented in this year’s tournament. Number 1 seeded SHS defeated three top seeded teams to reach the final match against #2 seed Northview High School from Atlanta. The following players participated in the tournament: Bryce Keim, Chambers Easterling, Spencer Brown, Omar Williams, Ashe Ray, Arpit Rana, Jackson Pye, Will Cubitt, and Rushil Patel.
Spartanburg is only the second team to repeat as champions in the eleven-year history of the tournament. Coach Todd Seagle said that the Vikings showed that they can handle being challenged and will be ready for the remainder of this season.

Drew Lawton Earns Top Merit Award at Junior Scholars Ceremony

Drew Lawton Earns Top Merit Award at Junior Scholars Ceremony
For the fifth year in a row, a District 7 student earned a top merit award in the county for the highest score on the PSAT (Preliminary SAT) during the Spartanburg County Junior Scholars Awards Ceremony at Converse College. Drew Lawton won two of the three awards on Thrusday, March 2 – he tied as the Highest Scorer on the PSAT Evidence Based Reading and Writing and earned the top merit award for the Highest PSAT Total Score as part of the South Carolina Junior Scholars Program. Drew is an 8th grader at McCracken Middle School.
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The Silent Auction Everyone’s Talking About

The Silent Auction Everyone’s Talking About
For a District that considers itself a family, it doesn’t take much to rally the troops. This past November, Ms. AJ Johnson, Assistant Principal at McCracken Middle School, got the kind of phone call every parent fears. Her son, Mackenzie, a recent SHS graduate and a Wofford freshman, had suffered a serious spinal cord injury and required acute medical attention. Today, while Mackenzie’s making great progress in his journey to recovery, AJ’s friends in the D7 know the road ahead is a long one. To help raise funds for Mackenzie’s care at The Shepherd Center in Atlanta the staff and students at MMS are holding an online silent auction, which opens today at 5:30pm.
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District 7 Wordsmiths Show Their Skills at National Competition

District 7 Wordsmiths Show Their Skills at National Competition
A group of Spartanburg School District 7 third-graders shined at a national vocabulary competition recently, earning nearly a perfect score and landing them in first place among thousands of other students from across the country. The third grade Odyssey team for gifted and talented students placed first in the nation among 112 teams in the first of three WordMasters Challenge meets this year. Students representing the team are: Sebastian Cartwright, Reese Cooper, Virginia Delaney, Sophie Groover, Thomas Hyde, Gabe Malarney, Sam Mitchell, Wade Cooper Neely, Davis Norton, Addie Ursy, and Charlotte Ward. Susan Holcombe coached the standout students in preparation for the WordMasters Challenge.
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Two Seniors Named U.S. Presidential Scholar Candidates

Two Seniors Named U.S. Presidential Scholar Candidates
District 7 is proud to announce that two Spartanburg High School seniors - Luke Martin and Margaret Tebbe - have been named candidates in the 2017 U.S. Presidential Scholars Program. They are one of 4,000 candidates chosen from a pool of over 3.5 million high school seniors nationwide. Ultimately, one male and one female from each state, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico will be selected. In 2009, Spartanburg High School had unprecedented success when both of the Presidential Scholars for the state of South Carolina were SHS students: Bonnie Antosh and Drew Henderson.
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It’s All GRADY!

It’s All GRADY!
Grady Thomas is one of the nicest student athletes that have ever passed through Spartanburg High School. He always has a kind word for his classmates and teammates and yet anyone who has seen him compete knows he has fierce desire to win within the true spirit of the game. Grady, an integral part of the Viking football and wrestling teams for the past four years, made a public decision today to sign a full scholarship to attend and play football at Western Carolina University. As evidenced by the standing-room-only crowd assembled in the atrium for the signing, Grady is truly outstanding in everyway, with his heart always in the game and with his team.
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Visiting Students from China get warm welcome from D7

Visiting Students from China get warm welcome from D7
Smiles are Universal! Thanks to technology the language barrier is hardly an issue for middle school students from Tangshan Middle School #12. This week the District has been privileged to welcome more than 50 young people from Hebei, China for an immersion program that provides the students with a close up look at life in America. In general, Chinese teenagers are shyer with adults than American teenagers, but they were able to come out of their shell with some coaxing. Thanks to Christine Horowitz, Director of Instruction Technology (and also host family) telling students they could go to Target if they asked her a question in English broke the ice quickly.
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Strength. Hope. Love. That’s Spartanburg.

Strength. Hope. Love. That’s Spartanburg.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr wrote, “Love is the most durable power in the world…Love is creative and redemptive. Love builds up and unites.” Every year our community comes together to honor and reflect on the words and purpose of Dr. King’s life during the City of Spartanburg’s Unity Week Celebration. This year’s celebration featured free events - a community walk, a day of service, and an evening unity celebration. District 7 was proud to support Unity Week.
Superintendent Russell Booker delivered greetings at the Mayor’s Unity Breakfast and McCracken student Corrine Bowden’s artwork was emblazoned on event t-shirts and banners telling the story of the powerful transforming forces of hope and love. MORE
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JBE Earns National Certification

JBE Earns National Certification
Jesse Boyd Elementary School is making National Headlines for embracing digital citizenship as an important part of their students’ education. The school is being honored as a Common Sense Certified School for Digital Citizenship. JBE has been intentional about teaching their students how to think critically, behave safely, and participate responsibly in this 24/7 “connected culture”. We applaud them for better equipping our young people to navigate the digital world.

D7’s First Little Free Library

D7’s First Little Free Library
You’ve heard the expression – if you build it they will come – well this is a story about a group of students and teachers at Houston Elementary School who took on a building project that’s promoting literacy in their school and community. And it also reflects the work our District is doing through 7Reads.
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District 7 Celebrates School Board Members

Spartanburg County School District 7 joins with other districts throughout the state to recognize the important contributions school board members make to their communities. The South Carolina School Boards Association is celebrating “School Board Recognition Month” in January 2017 to build awareness and understanding of the vital function a local board of education plays in our society. The theme — School Boards Stand Up 4 SC Public Schools – reinforces the unique role school boards play in promoting and advocating for quality education and the ownership they take for governing their local public schools. As the elected/appointed representatives of the people in their local communities, they represent their local communities’ voice and vision for their public schools.
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District 7 Breaks Ground For New Spartanburg High School

District 7 Breaks Ground For New Spartanburg High School
It’s been almost 60 years since District 7 constructed a new high school. But since the groundbreaking ceremony on December 14, 2016, students now won’t have to wait much longer before moving into a brand new flagship facility. In the groundbreaking ceremony on a patch of wooded property on the 177-acre site that will be home to the new school, District officials gathered to celebrate a new beginning for Spartanburg High School. During the hour-long groundbreaking ceremony, students and notable alumni underscored the significance of the day and the critical nature of this investment in the life of District 7. Read More for Photo Gallery
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Groundbreaking Ceremony

Groundbreaking Ceremony
On the count of “Ready, Set, Shovel,” members of the District 7 Board broke ground on October 28, for a brand new elementary school. In a ceremony that included D7 officials, local business partners and several students who will be among the first to attend the new school, the groundbreaking celebration was cited as a tribute to the power of partnership and progress. The new school will replace Houston and Chapman Elementary Schools and is scheduled to open in fall 2018. Read More for Pictures
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SAT composite results above the national average

SAT composite results above the national average
The College Board reported Spartanburg High School posted an average SAT score of 1505, a 26-point rise above last year’s totals and 21 points above the national public/private school average and 47 points above the state’s. Moreover, only five school districts out of the 83 in the state posted a higher SAT average than that of District 7’s.
The District’s average passage rate on Advanced Placement tests increased to 79%, which was well above the state and national passage rate. The district gave 649 exams in 24 subject areas, which represented the largest number of AP test administered in school history. A school record 115 students also earned the College Bound AP Scholar Award in recognition of their exceptional achievement on AP exams.
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Teachers of the Year Awards

LaTyphani Littlejohn (Typhani), first grade teacher from The Cleveland Academy of Leadership, has been selected as the 2016-17 Spartanburg School District 7 Teacher of the Year. Ms. Littlejohn finds no greater pleasure than of a servant leader. “Teaching is beyond a career for me. Teaching is a major part of my purpose and my life’s work!” With only 8 years so far in the classroom and the distinction this year of being voted Cleveland’s Teacher of the Year AND District 7’s Teacher of the Year, Littlejohn has proven herself a well respected, effective educator who goes above and beyond to satisfy the needs of her students. She stands out, with her calm disposition and compassionate nature, as a team player who understands the common goal of improving student achievement. In her warm, welcoming classroom Ms. Littlejohn approaches each topic with excitement while also incorporating interactive technology in her lessons to make connections. She says giving her students a purpose for learning is paramount and that it’s her job to help them find success.
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District Receives Prestigious Diversity Award

District Receives Prestigious Diversity Award
Spartanburg School District Seven was recognized as the 2016 Organization of the Year for Diversity and Inclusion by the Minority Economic Development Institute (MED) during the10th anniversary celebration ceremony that took place Thursday September 15, 2016 at the TD Convention Center in Greenville, SC. Ten years ago, the Minority Economic Development Institute, Inc., launched a vision and mission to improve the growth and development of minority-owned businesses throughout the Upstate. Mr. Maxwell Allen, Chief of Staff Office of the President, Clemson University, headlined Thursday nights’ Achievement Award Ceremony.
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SHS Leads the Area in National Merit Scholarship Semifinalists

SHS Leads the Area in National Merit Scholarship Semifinalists
Four academically talented seniors from Spartanburg High School have been named 2017 National Merit Scholarship semifinalists. Emma Kendrick, Luke Martin, Bradly Sanders and Margaret Tebbe were among 207 students encompassing public, private, and homeschools across South Carolina to achieve the ranking nationwide, according to officials at the National Merit Scholarship Corporation. Spartanburg High School had more National Merit Semifinalists than any other school, public or private, in the county.
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7Read Sizzles in 10th Year

7Read Sizzles in 10th Year
Over the past 10 years the Seven Reads Program has been a champion of getting children to read and has set a new standard of excellence for Spartanburg District 7, and the entire Spartanburg community. This top-notch program, in partnership with the community, has brought students rich, life changing experiences. On Monday, September 12, Seven Reads celebrates its 10th year a two-day event that drives home the joy of reading with tales of horror, pirates, some Dead Ends, a Coretta Scott King honor-award winning author, and the winner of the South Carolina First Novel Prize.
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First Day of School!

First Day of School!
Amid the bittersweet excitement that comes with saying “goodbye” to summer and “hello” to a brand new school year, District 7 schools rolled our the red carpet on August 15 for the official first-day back to school. And what a day it was. From hugs in the hallways as early as 7:00 am, to tired smiles late in the afternoon, Superintendent Dr. Russell Booker reported smooth sailing across the board. “This is the day we prepare for all summer long. For most of us, it’s the best day of the academic year!
As a warm welcome back, we’ve compiled a few of our favorite pictures from out and about in the District. Here’s hoping you see a few familiar faces! Read More for Photo Collage
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District Kicks Off Year with Inspirational 7Shares

District Kicks Off Year with Inspirational 7Shares
Wednesday August 10 was a day for hugs and hankies as District 7 educators and staff got together to kick off the start of the new school year. The hugs came as employees reconnected with one another following the summer break and the hankies came later with one inspirational presentation after another! With a nod to the summer Olympics, Superintendent Booker welcomed more than 1200 employees to the annual 7Shares Conference and in a “parade of nations” fashion the District’s 14 Principals were introduced to rousing cheers from their respective schools. Read More for Video and Photos
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Vikings Practice with Panthers

Vikings Practice with Panthers
For the first time ever, the Carolina Panthers practiced with a high school team – our Spartanburg Vikings. The Panthers practiced together with the Vikings at Wofford College on Thursday August 4, making this match up a “first” in the NFL. The joint practice was held as part of the NFL and Carolina Panthers “Play Football Month” program. Read More for video and media links
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Say Goodbye to Paper Flyers – We Have A Peachy New System

Say Goodbye to Paper Flyers – We Have A Peachy New System
District 7 is getting ready to launch a new electronic flyer communication tool called “Peachjar.” Beginning August 1, you will simply click the Peachjar button on the homepage of your school’s website to view flyers.
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New Grading Scale Takes Effect August 2016

New Grading Scale Takes Effect August 2016
This spring the State Board of Education voted unanimously to move South Carolina schools to a 10-point grading scale. The statewide shift applies to all students in grades 9-12 and will take effect August 2016. Given the option by the State Board to extend the policy more broadly, D7 will use the new scale for students in grades 2-12. Read More
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Back to School for Cleveland Academy

Back to School for Cleveland Academy
Cleveland Academy of Leadership kicked off a new school year on July 7 with a Back to School Bash complete with school supplies, food, fun and a host of community partners welcoming families to the school. The school was buzzing with activity as parents and students registered, met their teachers, collected information about the school year, and visited booths that filled the hallways.
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Thank you, Allen Tate Realtors

Thank you, Allen Tate Realtors
To support educational programs in Spartanburg School District 7, local real estate agents from Allen Tate Realtors gave a generous gift to assist teachers for special projects and programming for students during the upcoming school year.
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Boys Tennis Team Captures State Title

Boys Tennis Team Captures State Title
With a 6-0 victory over South Aiken the Vikings once again fulfilled their destiny and won the state championship. That makes three consecutive 4A state titles and 64 straight wins for the team.
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Support Staff of Year Announced

Support Staff of Year Announced
Each year, District 7 recognizes a support staff member from each school and auxiliary site who has excelled in commitment and contribution to the betterment of his or her school or department, students and educational community. We are pleased to present
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SHS Named to Washington Post’s Distinguished List

SHS Named to Washington Post’s Distinguished List
For the fifth consecutive year, Spartanburg High School has been named by The Washington Post as one of America’s Most Challenging High Schools. SHS is one of 15 in the state to make the Post’s annual list, which ranks schools by the ratio…
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Kiwanis Club Honors Terrific Kids of the Year

Kiwanis Club Honors Terrific Kids of the Year
Students representing elementary schools from across Spartanburg County were recognized for their good character and citizenship Monday, April 18 during the Kiwanis Club’s 27th annual Terrific Kid of the Year luncheon. The honorees from District 7 are: Mason Deas, The Early Learning Center; Mayuvin Alani Sok, Chapman Elementary; Ty’Dravious Bargo, Cleveland Academy of Leadership; Autumn Johnson, E. P. Todd School; Briannah Ellis, Houston Elementary; Chase Staley, Jesse Boyd Elementary; Serenity Cromer, Mary H. Wright Elementary; Emma Rookh Sullivan, Pine Street School; and Laree Wilkes, McCarthy-Teszler Elementary; Terrell Edwards, McCarthy-Teszler Teszler Division; and Joshua Way, McCarthy-Teszler Secondary Division.
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Dr. Booker Tells Community, “District 7 Is Soaring”

Dr. Booker Tells Community, “District 7 Is Soaring”
On the heels of an informative and inspiring presentation to members of the Spartanburg community, Dr. Russell Booker tossed a few frisbees into the audience following his annual State of the District at the Chapman Cultural Center. “District 7 is soaring,” said Booker. “We’re excited about the future, and grateful for your support!” Read More for Video
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Carver Middle Earns AVID Top Honor

Carver Middle Earns AVID Top Honor
The Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID) system works so well at Carver Middle School that AVID, a global nonprofit, selected Carver as a National Demonstration School, making it the first site in Spartanburg County.
A national kindergarten through postsecondary system, AVID transforms students into confident, college-going scholars and graduates. AVID provides students with the necessary organizational and academic skills, support and systems to be successful in school and beyond. Students practice these skills in AVID elective classes as well as school wide.
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Junior Scholars Awards

Junior Scholars Awards
William Lawton earned the merit award for the highest math score on the PSAT at the Spartanburg County Junior Scholars Awards Ceremony at Converse College. William, an 8th grader at McCracken, had the highest math score of ANY student in the county.
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D7 Receives Pre-K Coalition Grant

D7 Receives Pre-K Coalition Grant
District 7 has been recognized by the Spartanburg Quality Pre-K Coalition Project and received grant to enhance their 4-year-old kindergarten programs. The S.C. Community Block Grant awarded the funds for education pilot programs … READ MORE
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D7 Launches Online Registration to Improve Efficiency

D7 Launches Online Registration to Improve Efficiency
District 7 has selected PowerSchool to modernize its student registration process. The efficient online solution will free up time for school staff to build better relationships with students and parents, improving communication and family engagement.
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Technology Game Changer VIDEO

Technology Game Changer VIDEO
Technology can easily be overhyped as a game changer, but for students in D7 it’s an apt claim. Our investment in education hardware and a committed administration determined to integrate technology into the daily routines MORE for VIDEO
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D7’s Synergizes: Together is Better

D7’s Synergizes: Together is Better
From superlatives in leadership to star power in the studio 4th graders from the Cleveland Academy of Leadership wowed more than 600 educators from every corner of the United States during Franklin Covey Foundation’s annual Leadership Symposium.
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District 7 Shares New Mission, Vision and Values Statement

District 7 Shares New Mission, Vision and Values Statement
It takes a village to raise a child. But, the pearl of wisdom lost in that slightly overused cliché is it should take a village to raise our children. As District 7 unveils its new Mission, Vision and Values statement, MORE
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State Superintendent Salutes D7

State Superintendent Salutes D7
For the woman in charge of the education agency that handles nearly half the state budget, Molly Spearman makes the job of SC State Superintendent look easy. She recently spent the day touring District 7 with Superintendent Russell Booker.
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D7 Celebrates Super Bowl Champions!

D7 Celebrates Super Bowl Champions!
On Friday, Feb 5 Spartanburg High School received NFL Super Bowl Honor Roll footballs ‪from great players & men - Howard Williams, Steve Fuller, Stephen Davis, and Landon Cohen. They all came home to celebrate! Read More for Photos
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Community Kindness Offers Trip of a Lifetime

Community Kindness Offers Trip of a Lifetime
A highlight of many fifth graders is to visit the famous mud pit on Barrier Island in the low county of SC. This January thanks to community kindness from our friends at the Piedmont Interstate Fair children from the Cleveland Academy for the first time..
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Top Scorers

Top Scorers
We want to applaud thirty (30) students in D7 for earning the maximum scale score in at least one section of the ACT Aspire test. ACT Aspire was a new test for students in grades 3-8 that was given last year. READ MORE for names and photo
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Changes in School Board Leadership

We welcome two newcomers Meg Clayton and Clay Mahaffey following the retirement of trustees Andy Oberg and Laura Bauknight. With kind words for their contributions, Dr. Booker thanked Mr. Oberg and Mrs. Bauknight, at the November Board meeting, and presented them with…
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D7 Earns National Recognition from Apple

D7 Earns National Recognition from Apple
District 7 has been honored as an Apple Distinguished Program for our 1:1 digital initiative, Seven Ignites. D7 is one of only 300 institutions recognized nationally to receive this prestigious award for innovation, leadership and educational excellence.
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National Merit Semifinalists

National Merit Semifinalists
District 7 proudly announces four academically talented seniors from Spartanburg High School - Nathan Brown, Kara Dowling, Drew Keefer, and Phillip Muller - been named National Merit Semifinalists in the 2016 National Merit Scholarship Competition.
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District 7 Announces Gains in SAT and AP Scores

Spartanburg High School’s mission to prepare students for the competitive world of college and career is integrated into every aspect of its curriculum. Following a release from The College Board on SAT and AP scores, Spartanburg High School Principal Jeff Stevens said, “there’s ample evidence that Spartanburg High School students are well on their way to success.” The figures released today for graduates show the average SAT composite of 1479 to be 18 points above the national public school average and 51 points above South Carolina’s SAT average.
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JBE Student Featured on the Golf Channel

JBE Student Featured on the Golf Channel
Tristan Harrill is not your average 4th grader. The 11 year-old Jesse Boyd student is a courageous cancer survivor. He’s also a pretty avid golfer and a huge fan of the First Tee program that operates in all of the District’s elementary schools. “Tristan i

Amazon Creates Smiles

Amazon Creates Smiles
In a scene that looked like an Oprah Christmas special, teachers and students at Chapman Elementary School squealed with delight this week when corporate giant, Amazon showed up to shower teachers with more than $15,000 in school supplies. Calling it “backyard philanthropy” at its best, Chapman Principal Eric Mathison said Amazon likes to give back to the communities where their associates live and work. “This came as a complete surprise for us. I don’t know who had more fun, the teachers or their students!” For their part, Amazon said giving back is a source of corporate pride. “We are proud to support teachers who do and give so much to ensure their students are successful.”

7Shares, 7Cares, 7Dares

7Shares, 7Cares, 7Dares
If you think 1200 kids in a high school gymnasium can make a little noise – you should hear their teachers! Primed with excitement and sporting their respective school colors – the entire District 7 team celebrated the start of a new academic year.
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SHS Honored with General Excellence Award in Athletics

District 7 celebrates another year of tremendous accomplishment as a result of the caliber of our students in the area of athletics. For the second straight year, Spartanburg High School has been honored with the prestigious General Excellence Award
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Dr. Sonia Leverette Named Asst. Supt. of Students Services

District Seven is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Sonia Cunningham Leverette, as Assistant Superintendent of Student Services. Dr. Leverette will assume responsibility for leading a comprehensive student services program across the district,
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Chinese Students After A D7 Style Education

Chinese Students After A D7 Style Education
Though separated by thousands of miles and an ocean, SHS and Handan No. 1 High School in China share the same books, the same curriculum and enjoy many of the same teaching styles. On June, after a 5-year collaboration, D7 signed a formal memorandum
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SHS Again Named to The Washington Post’s List

For the 4th year in a row SHS has received ranking in The Washington Post list of America’s Most Challenging High Schools for how well they prepare their students for college level work.
SHS earned the 18th spot in the state. With 26 advanced placement c

Kiwanis Club Honors Terrific Kids

Students representing elementary schools from across the county were recognized for their good character and citizenship during the Kiwanis Club of Spartanburg Terrific Kid of the Year luncheon. The honorees from D7 are: Read More for Photo
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Vision, Values, and Viking Pride

Vision, Values, and Viking Pride
Donning a pair of blue and gold sunglasses, District Seven Superintendent, Dr. Russell Booker told a packed auditorium at the Chapman Cultural Center on April 17th that “the future for the district is so bright, we need to wear shades.”
During his 4th an
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District’s Best!

District’s Best!
Take a bow, Ashton, YOU are The Best Singer in the District! Freshman Academy’s Ashton Coggins stole the show Saturday, March 21 during the Best Singer Finale at SHS. She will go on to compete for the Best Singer in the State competition.

Carver Middle Using Cutting-Edge Technology

Carver Middle Using Cutting-Edge Technology
Carver Middle is using cutting-edge technology to create a model for prosthetic hands. Students in Andy Youngblood’s gateway to technology and robotics class has been working with retired engineers to assemble 3-D printed prosthetic hands for children.
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D7 Student Earns TOP Junior Scholars Merit Award

D7 Student Earns TOP Junior Scholars Merit Award
For the third year in a row, a D7 student has earned the TOP merit award in the county for the highest score on the PSAT during the Junior Scholars Awards Ceremony at Converse College. Will Kendrick, 8th grader, received the Highest Overall Score.
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Rally at the State House for the Vikings

Rally at the State House for the Vikings
Spartanburg High School’s Varsity football team was celebrated by the SC House of Representatives at the State House on January 22. The team was presented with a resolution honoring them for their impressive win of the 2014 4A Division II Championship.
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McCracken Named National School to Watch

The National Forum to Accelerate Middle Schools has announced McCracken Middle School has received first-time designation in the National “Schools to Watch” Program. The Forum having established partnership with education leaders in states nationwide, announced the names of three schools in S.C. that met its strict criteria. McCracken Middle is only the 16th National “School to Watch” in S.C., and will be recognized at the National Schools to Watch Conference in Washington, DC on June.
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D7 Redistricts School Board Boundary Lines

In response to the most recent census, the Spartanburg County Legislative Delegation says map adjustments are needed to ensure School District Seven continues to uphold the one-person, one-vote rule established with the 1965 Voting Rights Act.
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We are the Champions!

Vikings are the 2014 STATE CHAMPIONS! Final score versus York was 49-28.
On behalf of the entire District 7 and Spartanburg High School community of student-athletes, coaches, and staff, we THANK you for your support this season. Please stand proud know

Superintendent Visits White House for Summit

Superintendent Visits White House for Summit
Dr. Russell Booker joined 100 school leaders from model districts nationwide who were selected by the U.S. Department of Education to participate in the first National Connected Superintendents Summit held Wednesday, November 19, at the White House. Presid
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STEM Stars Lighting the Way!

The Riley Institute Diversity Leadership Institute (DLI) Upstate Class – The STEM Station Stars - has partnered with Mary H. Wright Elementary to support the integration of STEM curriculum into the school’s 4th & 5th grade by unfitting an existing classroom to a lab-type environment. DLI STEM Stars presented a check for $10,500 and unveiled the classroom during a special event on November, 17.
Heartfelt thanks to our STEM Stars: Kristy Caradori, Matt Gilley, Coby Hennecy, Michelle Hunt, Horace Littlejohn, Jeff Stevens, Billy Strickland, and Adolphus Williams. And a special shout out to our sponsors: Denny’s, Spartanburg Water Systems, Spartanburg Sanitary Sewer District, Spartanburg Regional Foundation & Healthcare, Spartanburg County Foundation, and SAE International.
READ MORE for photos
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D7 Chalks Up “EXCELLENT” Report Card Rating

The South Carolina Department of Education release of the state, school, and district report cards shows District Seven’s Absolute Rating advancing for the fourth consecutive year, with a ranking of “Excellent” for the 2013-2014 school year.
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Deputy Superintendent Gets Kudos for Creativity

Deputy Superintendent Gets Kudos for Creativity
Dr. Terry Pruitt is usually noted for his knowledge surrounding K-12 curriculum - but recently he was honored for his starring role as an advocate for arts education. Dr. Pruitt has been named the South Carolina Alliance for Arts Education.
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Gallup Research Kick Starts Conversation in District 7

Gallup Research Kick Starts Conversation in District 7
Dr. Tim Hodges, Director of Research with Gallup spent time in Spartanburg and the District speaking about hope, engagement, and well-being, and how measuring those outcomes can strengthen student readiness for learning.
Last year the Gallup Student Poll found that while 54% of the children surveyed felt hopeful, 46% feel stuck or discouraged about the future. Hodges noted, “That is real cause for concern.”
Next week D7 will administer the 2014 Gallup Student Poll to 1800 children in grades 5-12 with 20 questions like: “Did you smile and laugh a lot yesterday?”, “Is there an adult in my life who cares about my future?”, and “Is my school committed to building the strengths of each student?”
We believe this important feedback will help us improve hope and engagement and enable us to better prepare our students for college, career, and life.
Gallup is providing this Poll free of charge.
READ MORE for photos and links to news coverage
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SHS Exceeds State & National AP Passage Rate %; SAT Score Matches National Average

The College Board reported Spartanburg High School had an average SAT composite critical reading, math, and writing score of 1471, which matched the national average and was 42 points above the public school state average.
More than half of all seniors took the SAT. In addition for schools where at least half of all seniors were tested, Spartanburg School District 7’s composite score exceeded all other Spartanburg County Districts, in addition to Cherokee County, Union County, and Greenville County.
In addition, Spartanburg School District 7 was one of only seventeen school districts in the state to meet the national average on SAT.
District Seven’s average passage rate on Advanced Placement (AP) was 75%. Between Spartanburg High School and the Freshman Academy, the district administered 595 exams, which is significant and impressive. Moreover, District 7 exceeded both the state and national average passage rates on AP exams. The only school in the state to receive a 100% passage rate on AP exams was the SHS Freshman Academy; each 9th grader who took an AP test passed and will receive college credit.
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Game On!

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D7 Selected to Join the Nation’s League of Innovative Schools

D7 Selected to Join the Nation’s League of Innovative Schools
Spartanburg School District Seven has been named one of 11 new members accepted into the League of Innovative Schools, by Digital Promise, a national, independent nonprofit organization authorized by Congress to accelerate innovation in education.
As the only district from South Carolina tapped for membership this fall, District Seven was selected from a competitive and national pool of applicants based on its leadership, evidence of results, innovative vision for learning, and commitment to collaboration. The League now includes 57 districts and education agencies that collectively represent more than 3 million students across 27 states.
“This is a tremendous honor that certainly underscores our goal to be a model School District in the Southeast and the most innovative school district in South Carolina,” said District Seven Superintendent, Dr. Russell Booker. “Our journey to this juncture is directly tied to our dedication to enhance the educational experience of our students. Our one-to-one digital initiative, 7 Ignites, has placed a mobile learning device in the hands of every District 7 student from grades 3 through 12. The result is a level of student engagement that is exciting to see and an opportunity to accelerate our children’s ability to harness the power of technology and digital learning.”
READ MORE for link to news coverage surrounding this news
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Golden Apple Award

Last night Beth Brotherton from WYFF News 4 announced Virginia Jones, Assistant Principal from the Cleveland Academy of Leadership, had received the Golden Apple Award.
Each week WYFF News 4 rewards an educator who goes above and beyond the standard teaching methods, by designating them a Golden Apple Award winner. The winner is selected from nominations by a panel of judges.
Virginia, or Mama Jones as her students call her due to her nurturing personality, has been an educator for 42 years. She truly has the magic and ability to put children at ease. Virginia also has unconditional love, caring, understanding, and a special gift of kindness. She truly goes above and beyond, and District Seven has been so fortunate she has chosen to share her talents with us – at all levels, high school, middle school and now in an elementary setting at the Cleveland Academy.
Virginia Jones says the best reward is “seeing her former students flourish.”
Please click READ MORE to link to the video of Ms. Jones’ award segment
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Newsweek Top High School

Newsweek Top High School
Spartanburg High has been named one of America’s top high schools in Newsweek’s 2014 High School Rankings. Over 14,000 schools in the nation were considered for the rankings; only six South Carolina schools made the list for America’s Top High Schools Beating the Odds. Spartanburg High School was the only school in the county honored.
This year, Newsweek sought to recognize schools whose students are “beating the odds,” and performing better than statistically expected for narrowing the achievement gap. The Newsweek criteria were based on assessments and rankings directly related to college preparedness. Unlike Spartanburg High School’s recent distinction by The Washington Post as one of America’s Most Challenging High Schools as related to student Advanced Placement (AP) scores, the Newsweek ranking recognizes student progress on AP and ACT/SAT scores, graduation rates, counselor-to-student ratios, and the socio-economic background of a high school’s student population.
“This is big for us,” said Superintendent Dr. Russell Booker. “For the first time in its survey of top high schools, Newsweek has produced a list which has leveled the playing field for districts with diverse demographics. Based on the criteria used by Newsweek the achievement level of our students shows that they are not only beating the odds but succeeding at every level from college prep, honors, advanced placement, to career and technical education.”
“This is a win for the entire District Seven community,” said Principal Jeff Stevens. “It points to the dedication of our teachers from Spartanburg High School all the way down to our elementary schools. The achievement of our students and their eagerness to be productive and successful citizens is a testament to our hardworking staff. Having earned The Washington Post distinction, we are duly honored to now make the Newsweek list.”

SHS Senior Earns 2014 AAU Academic All American Award

SHS Senior Earns 2014 AAU Academic All American Award
Sarah Wade, senior at Spartanburg High School, has received the 2014 Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) Academic All American award. Sarah was one of only six girls named from South Carolina and the only one from Spartanburg. Created in 2013, the award recognizes athletes of the AAU Volleyball program for their excellence in academics as well as athletics.
Sarah played recently with Upward Stars’ top National team in the 41st AAU Girls’ Junior National Volleyball Championships in Orlando, FL where she was selected and nominated for the award.
Sarah is the captain of SHS varsity volleyball team this year and has been on the team since she was in the eighth grade. Sarah is also currently ranked in the top 1% of her class and is involved in numerous extracurricular activities (treasurer of Anchor club, co-consul of Latin Club, Mu Alpha Theta, National Honor Society, volunteer with Boys and Girls Club). We congratulate Sarah on her continued success in the classroom and on the court.

Perfect PASS Scores

In School District Seven 47 students achieved perfect scores on the Palmetto Assessment of State Standards (PASS) test. The tests are given yearly to public school students in grades three through eight, and cover math, science, social studies, writing and
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7 Shares, Cares and DARES!

7 Shares, Cares and DARES!
Primed with excitement and sporting their pride, the District 7 team of teachers and staff donned their individual school colors and celebrated the start of a new academic year with the annual back-to-school program known as 7Shares on Thursday, August 14. The 1200 employees of the District packed the Spartanburg High School gym for a morning of inspiration, motivation, and recognition.
Bobbi Kennedy, Special Projects Director with ETV, brought special recognition to Adam Babcock, technology integration specialist at Spartanburg High School, for being named a 2014 PBS LearningMedia Digital Innovator. After a nationwide search, Adam was selected as one of only 100 educators from across the country and the only one in South Carolina. He was chosen for his passion and commitment to innovative teaching practices that integrate digital media and technology in the classroom.
Praised for their commitment in the classroom, 13 teachers were honored as the top educator in their school with the District Teacher of the Year award going to Marquice Clark from the Cleveland Academy of Leadership. Eleven first-year teachers were also honored for outstanding performance during their induction year. Leslie Sloan from Spartanburg High School was awarded the Crystal Apple - the top award for a new teacher.
Click Read More for our event photo gallery
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General Award of Excellence

District Seven celebrates another year of tremendous accomplishment as a result of the caliber of our students in the area of athletics. Spartanburg High School has been honored with the prestigious General Excellence Award in Athletics, sponsored by the Spartanburg Herald Journal, for its team and individual accomplishments including state and region titles. Our Vikings had a strong season across the board, winning our first 4A state championship in boys tennis and taking state runner-up finishes in girls golf and boys swimming. Our teams also earned state titles in girls golf, boys tennis and girls track and field. This is the second time in three years, SHS has claimed the award. We are so very proud of our students, parents and coaches.

PBS LearningMedia Digital Innovator

PBS LearningMedia Digital Innovator
Adam Babcock, technology integration specialist at Spartanburg High School, has been named a PBS LearningMedia Digital Innovator. After a nationwide search, Adam was selected as one of only 100 educators from across the country and the only one in South Carolina. He was chosen for his passion and commitment to innovative teaching practices that integrate digital media and technology in the classroom. Over this past year, Adam trained and coached 9-12th grade teachers on technology integration opportunities as the district implemented its one-to-one MacBook Air and iPad deployment to over 4,200 students.
Over the course of the 2014-2015 school year, Adam will work with his peers thoughtout the country and share strategies around digital media integration. This yearlong professional development program will foster and grow a community of tech-savvy educators that will serve as ambassadors for integrating best practices in digital learning in classrooms across the country.
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Dr. Booker Receives Top Honor

Superintendent Dr. Russell Booker has been named the 2015 South Carolina Superintendent of the Year by the South Carolina Association of School Administrators (SCASA). Dr. Booker’s hard work, high integrity, and great ability have left an indelible imprint on the young people of our community and all of us in District 7. We are truly proud of Dr. Booker!
In a press release from SCASA it was noted -
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Three Schools Earn Palmetto Gold, Silver Awards

The State Department of Education and the South Carolina’s Education Oversight Committee have announced three schools are the recipient of a state Palmetto Gold or Silver Award for the 2013-14 school year. The Palmetto Awards program honors schools for att

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