School briefs for August 10th-16th

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TCL pins 53 at Aug. 3 ceremony

The Technical College of the Lowcountry recognized 53 health sciences graduates during its Aug. 3 pinning ceremony at the Beaufort Campus. The ceremony honored graduates of the massage therapy, medical assisting, surgical technology, radiologic technology, practical nursing and associate degree nursing programs.

The special ceremony allows students to receive the respective pins for their professions while being recognized by faculty, staff, friends and family. 

The ceremony also includes class speakers, pledges and graduation traditions unique to each program. For example, the nursing tradition involves lighting of a lamp, a nod to Florence Nightingale who carried a lamp to light her path as she cared for the sick and dying soldiers during the Crimean War.

In the last five years, TCL has graduated nearly 500 health care professionals. After completing these programs, graduates will pursue licensing and become healthcare professionals in Lowcountry hospitals, nursing homes, clinics, physician offices, assisted living facilities, schools and more. Others will choose to continue their education. 

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The graduates are:

• Massage Therapy: David Audelo, Devon J. Anthony, Laurel A. Berkey, Juliette Jenkins-Smith, Sarah A. Rider and Latoya Smalls, all of Beaufort County; Kayla M. Harmon of Jasper County; Cynthia Mills of Hampton County; and Bethany K. Skipper of Chatham County, Ga.

• Medical Assisting: Renita Drayton and Roslyn Todd, both of Beaufort; and Shakeri Stephens of Hampton.

• Surgical Technology: Jasmine Simmons, Lisa Vogel, Ryan Arbuckle, Kindra Blodgett, AJ Herrera-Moreno, Cherelle Poole, Tracy Mason, Lexy Cajigas and Jonathan Cohen, all of Beaufort; Jerri Bess of Jasper; Jenea Boni of Chatham; Judith Johnston of Effingham; and Kenna Robertson of Colleton.

• Radiologic Technology: Toni Ellis, Rudolph Golec, Wendy Hollingsworth, Natalie McQuillen, Ilsy Olan, Alexander Ramos, Sara Ricketts, Frank Sliva, Lauryn Strozier and Ashley Wallace, all of Beaufort; Bobbi Sue Harmon, of Chatham, Ga.; Chelsea Nicholson of Colleton; and Faith Rea of Hampton. 

• Practical Nursing: Korey D. Burns of Chatham; Mary Louise Frame, Tracy L. Kinard and Lakisha D. Spiegel, all of Beaufort; and Stevi J. Mingledorff of Jasper.

• Associate Degree Nursing: ChiRhonda M. Neal, Shannon O. Angelo, Ashley L. Campbell, Alexis B. Clark, Taylor E. Lammy and Olivia W.P. Lanava, all of Beaufort; Terrand J. Eady of Hampton; Melissa A. Ford of Jasper; David J. Laumeyer of Chatham; and Taylor M. Price of Effingham. 

Teacher of year finalists announced

Five classroom teachers have been named as finalists for Beaufort County’s 2017-2018 District Teacher of the Year.

The finalists are Duncan Aspinwall-Winter, an IB History teacher at Hilton Head Island High School; Angela Bellantone, a literacy coach at Bluffton Middle School; Jennifer Friend-Kerr, a third-grade teacher at Hilton Head Island School for the Creative Arts; Meredith Rhoden, an engineering teacher at Beaufort Elementary School; and Dr. Nancy Ungvarsky, a biology teacher at Beaufort High School.

Superintendent Jeff Moss announced the five selections before an audience of hundreds of educators at the opening session of Summer Institute 2017, the district’s annual three-day summer professional development conference. This year’s conference is being held at May River High School.

“Great teaching is the No. 1 ingredient in an excellent education, and today we announced five top-notch professionals who epitomize great teaching,” said Superintendent Jeff Moss. “Our finalists are terrific representatives for all of our district’s teachers.”

The District Teacher of the Year will be announced Friday, Sept. 22, at an awards breakfast.

Becoming District Teacher of the Year is a three-step process that began when school-level teachers of the year were selected in April. Those wishing to compete for District Teacher of the Year submitted detailed applications in June.

In the second step, a selection committee consisting of parents, former educators and community leaders from across Beaufort County reviewed the applications and rated them using a numerical scoring system. The five highest-scoring applicants were named as finalists. 

In the next step, the five finalists will be interviewed by a separate review committee again composed of judges from across the county. The judges will begin by reviewing a video of each teacher doing a classroom lesson.  

The judges will then score candidates based on how well they respond to questions about their teaching methods as shown in the video, as well as how they respond to questions about current education issues.  

After those interviews, the panel will select a District Teacher of the Year to represent Beaufort County’s classroom professionals.

The current Teacher of the Year is Hilton Head Island High School teacher Beth McMurray.