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Georgetown Co. superintendent introduces new motto for new year

Published: Aug. 18, 2021 at 6:09 AM EDT
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GEORGETOWN COUNTY, S.C. (WCSC) - As the superintendent of the Georgetown County School District prepares for his second annual ‘first day of school’ in the role, he says he wants to motivate his students.

Georgetown County School District Superintendent Keith Price recognizes there’s a lot of work to do this year if people want to get back to normal. He likes to have a motto to help set the tone for the school year.

This year, Price’s motto is, “Hard works pays off.”

“When you have to really work hard at something and you get rewarded for it, those are the things that mean the most to you,” Price said. “So, our motto for the new year is, ‘hard works pays off.”

Price says they obviously want to introduce new learning in alignment for the new grade level, but they also need to address unfinished learning from last year.

“We’ve got a lot of hard work to do,” Price said. “We recognize that many of our students, while some succeeded last year during the difficult year, there were others who struggled.”

Price says the main focus this year is on learning, since now they have strategies in place if health concerns increase.

“Cautiously excited I guess is the phrase I’m using right now. While the pandemic is still on-going, it’s a little different now than it was last year,” Price said. “But were just really excited about a fresh start to a brand-new school year and just hoping that everything gets off wonderfully.”

Georgetown County School District Assistant Superintendent Dr. Bethany Giles adds that they are assessing student’s ability by calling it unfinished learning, not a learning loss.

The district had way more students attend summer learning programs than in years past, but Giles says it is just to help catch up students who need some extra time.

Giles says between 5% and 10% of students did not pass last year, but she says the first step to getting back to normal is having everyone back together again safely.

Georgetown County is enrolling about 7,600 students this year, which Giles says is up by about 1,000 students from last week.

Giles is beginning her first year as assistant superintendent and 21st year working for the district. She says with teachers, students, and parents partnering together, they can get back on track this year.

“Our county has a rich heritage and a tradition of excellence, and we definitely just want to build upon that,” Giles said. “And being from here, as you said, this is home, I’m invested, and I want to see the best for everyone involved.”

Giles says the increase in technology usage last year has sparked new opportunities for parents to stay involved with their children’s success and help them catch up.

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