Schools greet 20,000 students on first day of classes

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Nearly 20,000 Beaufort County students began classes for the 2012-13 school year on Monday, many of them taking advantage of new instructional programs across the district.
Superintendent Valerie Truesdale said that the menu of instructional choices for Beaufort County students gets broader and more varied every year, particularly in math and science.

Substitute teacher Penny Tarrance helps kindergarten students play a name game to help them remember each other Monday during the first day of school at Beaufort Elementary School. Photo by Bob Sofaly

“Parents appreciate being able to select academic programs that match their children’s interests and talents,” Truesdale said.
Some new instructional choices and learning opportunities available:
• Eleven middle and high schools will begin using iPad tablet computers in core course classrooms.
• More than 100 students are enrolled a new military academy option at Robert Smalls Middle School called the Leadership Development Program.  Directed by retired U.S. Marine Corps Gunnery Sgt. Francisco Gamez, the program will be aimed at developing leadership skills and personal discipline.
• Beaufort Elementary has expanded its popular Montessori program to fourth and fifth grades.
Students at five schools will be greeted by new principals, including:
• Chavon Browne, a lifelong Beaufort County resident and an assistant principal at Red Cedar Elementary School for the past three years, is the new principal at Port Royal Elementary.
• Corey Murphy, a U.S. Army Reserve captain, will be the new principal at Beaufort High School.