Regional News




Regional Network Director, Elizabeth Bryant

Report news to your regional contact. Scroll through the news below, click on regional coordinator's name to open an email to them.

 Regional News due August 12, 2018.  Please submit to

Regional News as of May 2, 2018

Region 1A:  Anderson, Oconee, Pickens 

Region 1A Coordinator -Eunice Bardin, Concord Elementary, Anderson 5


Concord Elementary (Eunice Bardin, Librarian) held their first Battle of the Books competition.  There were 16 teams of 4 students in 4th and 5th grade. Students read 10 books from the SC Children’s book award list, then battled by answering questions about the books.  Teams got 3 points for the correct title and 2 points for the correct author. The picture is of the champion team from Mrs. Hunsinger’s 5th grade class.  altaltPICTURE 2

Tamara Cox hosted a March Book Madness tournament. Students that voted were entered into a drawing for a prize package of books. The winning book was Scythe by Neal Shusterman. PICTURE 2


Author of Dear Martin, Nic Stone, visited Wren High School as part of Anderson County Public Library's Black History Month celebration. PICTURE 3


Region 1B: Cherokee, Greenville, Spartanburg

Region 1B Coordinator - Jill Tyner, New Prospect Elementary, Spartanburg District 1

Spartanburg 1

To celebrate Teen Tech Week, Librarian Kellie Smith invited students at Landrum High School to come into the LMC to learn about different technology tools at three different stations. Over 350 students learned how to code on Sphero robots, create controllers to play PacMan with Makey Makey kits, and create catapults from scratch.  PICTURE 4-6

Spartanburg 5

Jamie Gregory and Karen Hill of James F. Byrnes High School hosted a skype session with author Ashley Hope Perez in honor of National Library Week. In the January/February issue of the periodical Teacher Librarian, Jamie had an article published: “The Keyword Inquiry Log.” An additional article is forthcoming in the May/June issue: “The Information Literate Student: Embedding information literacy across disciplines with Guided Inquiry.” Currently Karen serves on the Children’s Right to Read task force, sponsored by ILA.

Spartanburg 7

Cindy Haggerty, Media Specialist of Mary H. Wright Elementary School was featured in Alyssa Mulliger’s article 6 books to help develop young children’s vocabulary from  You can find the article at


Region 2: Abbeville, Edgefield, Greenwood, Laurens, McCormick, Saluda 

Region 2 Coordinator - Jacqueline Arnold Rapp, Ninety-Six High School, Greenwood 52


Gray Court-Owings School Media Center (Michelle Spires, Librarian) in Laurens 55 was awarded a $5,000 Lowe's Toolbox for Education Grant to makeover an existing garden as well as acquire STEM materials for the library.  Some of the STEM items added to the library are Ozobot Bit Robots, Makey Makeys, Osmo for Ipad, and Snap Circuits.  Michelle Spires was also named the 2018-2019 Teacher of the Year for Gray Court-Owings School. PICTURE 7-8


Beverly Hall Wilson will be retiring in June as library media specialist of McCormick High School. This is Mrs. Wilson’s 41st year in education with the last 27 years in McCormick serving as music teacher, fine arts coordinator, elementary Spanish, academically gifted, artistically gifted and interim technology director. Since 2000 she has been a library media specialist at the elementary, middle and high school levels.

Region 3: Chester, Lancaster, Union, York 

Region 3 Coordinator - Mike LeRoy, Indian Land High, Lancaster



Indian Land High School received a DonorChoose Grant funded by Ripple for a paper cart for bulletin board paper.  

Students at Indian Land High helped complete a StickTogether Poster. The final result was a Monarch Butterfly. PICTURE 9-10

Andrew Jackson High School had a book award breakfast in March for the YABA book awards. Close to 50 students attended this year.  

Buford Middle Librarian, Ann Tillman, hosted a March Reading Madness Tournament.  Seven students correctly predicted the winning book and received a special lunch of pizza and cupcakes.  The winning book was Prisoner B-3087 by Alan Gratz.

To celebrate School Library Month, Librarian Leigh Jordan invited students at A. R. Rucker Middle to color a giant map of the World and to complete a StickTogether poster of a frog.  

York 4 - Fort Mill  

The first annual Fort Mill Read-In was held April 12th at the Anne Springs Close Greenway.  Two-hundred and twenty-one middle and high school students enjoyed activities including blackout poetry, creating a found poem while hiking the Greenway, book talks, mindful yoga, and an interactive poetry slam.  Students also enjoyed visiting with local authors, Ms. Close, the York County Library, and Kona Ice.
(Springfield Middle, Pleasant Knoll Middle, Banks Trail Middle, Gold Hill Middle, Fort Mill Middle, Nation Ford High School & Fort Mill High School) PICTURE 11-13

Pleasant Knoll Middle School (Kim Nees, Media Specialist) took home first place in the SC Junior Book Award Banner contest with their entry for I Will Always Write Back.

Springfield Middle (Melissa Keefer, Media Specialist) embarked on a two week, school-wide STEM immersion challenge based on their One School, One Book, Refugee by Alan Gratz.  It was a powerful experience for students and staff alike, culminating in students presenting inquiry-based projects of their own choosing during Mustangs Make A Difference Night in February. PICTURE 14-16

York 3 - Rock Hill

Rawlinson Road Middle School Media Center recently hosted a Reading Challenge for students in the 6th grade. The purpose of the challenge was to encourage students to read a book from cover to cover and not abandon it mid-read. Students were required to complete several tasks in Canvas, the LMS program used by the district, to show they were committed to reading the book selected in its entirety. Language Arts teachers saw a great improvement in the independent reading happening daily as students “stuck with” a book and could talk about so much more during Reader’s Workshop. Students who participated got to dress down one day and came to the Media Center to play board games with Mrs. Polk, the Media Specialist. All in all it was a great experience for everyone. For the last nine weeks, the Challenge has been extended to other teachers. The students must create a Shelfie Selfie by the end of April! We can't wait to share their work on RNN, our daily news channel. PICTURE 17-19

Region 4A:  Fairfield, Lexington 1-4, Newberry 

Region 4A Coordinator - Anita Hutto, Pelion Elementary School, Lexington 1

Lexington 1

Jack Gantos visited Pelion Middle on March 26th. Gantos shared his love of libraries and modeled the writing process to students and teachers.

Marion Blumenthal Lazan also visited Pelion Middle on January 8th. Her message of hope and survival will stay with students a long time. She was an inspiration to all.

Lexington School District One students will soon have new books to read.  Every Learning Commons received funds from the district to update and improve collections.  

Lexington 2

Lendy Hinton, Media Specialist at Brookland-Cayce High School and Marinda Aiken, Media Specialist at Saluda River Academy for the Arts will retire in June after serving Lexington School District 2 for 28 years.


Region 4B: Richland One, Richland Two, Lexington-Richland Five, USC Columbia

Region 4B Coordinator - Ayanna Mayes, Burton Pack Elementary, Richland One 

Richland One

Over 700 fourth grade students from Richland One celebrated storytelling by attending the Augusta Baker's Dozen storytelling event.  Bradley Elementary School librarian Betsy Russell was one of the featured storytellers! (Photo: Augusta Baker) PICTURE 20

Richland One Learning Environments and Instructional Resources (LEIR) Department is transforming several libraries into flexible learning spaces, and many school librarians are developing makerspaces to enhance the school library. Ljubica Arcenaux of Rosewood Elementary has integrated new collaborative furnishings into the school library. Tammie Wells and the students at C. A. Johnson High School love their library's new collaborative space. Julia Choate, Satchel Ford Elementary, and Lindsay Yaroch, Webber Elementary, have both developed new makerspaces. (Photos: CAJ, Rosewood, Satchel Ford) PICTURE 21-23

Heyward Gibbes Middle School celebrated National Library Week with a Battle of the Books competition, hosted by school librarian Ayanna Mayes and special guest Lateefah McKee, Miss Benedict College 2017-2018. All participants also take a field trip to a Columbia Fireflies baseball game in recognition of their participation in the reading program. (Photo: BOB Gibbes) PICTURE 24

Richland Five

The students and teachers on Team 7 at CrossRoads Intermediate (Media Specialist, Kelly Brown) in Lexington Richland Five were delighted to attend their 1st skype session with author, Max Brallier.  The students had received and read an autographed copy of The Last Kids on Earth and the Nightmare King. The interaction between the author and students was very inspirational and motivating. Mr. Brallier revealed how this will be on TV in the near future!    

Kelly Brown, Media Specialist at CrossRoads Intermediate School, will be retiring at the end of this year.  She has worked at CRIS for the past 21 years. Prior to that she was at Laurens Primary for 4 years.

Illustrator Michael White (The Library Dragon) delighted the K-2 crowd at Harbison West Elementary with his hilarious, pun-filled stories and artwork.  He made artists out of all of them by guiding them through three drawings for each grade level. After each drawing was complete, he’d ask the kids to show him their art and he’d point out the wonderful things he saw.  The kids--and teachers--left feeling that trying something new is fun, perfection is not an outcome, and practice could make them better at anything! PICTURE 25

Region 5A: Aiken, Barnwell, Bamberg

Region 5A Coordinator - Denise Parker, Barnwell Elementary, Barnwell 45

Region 5B: Allendale, Orangeburg, Calhoun 

Region 5B Coordinator - Kenya Dantzler, Brookdale Elementary, Orangeburg 5 

Region 6: Kershaw, Lee, Sumter, Clarendon 

Region 6 Coordinator - Ronda Speed, Sumter High, Sumter

Region 7: Chesterfield, Marlboro, Darlington, Dillon, Marion, Florence 

Region 7 Coordinator - Debbie Heimbrook, Lucy T. Davis Elementary, Florence


Lake View High School held its annual Poetry Jam, Art Show, and Family Literacy Night on Wednesday, March 18, 2018. Local author Tabitha James served as the guest speaker and was on-hand to sign copies of her latest release. Following James' discussion of her writing journey, LVHS students shared poetry on an open mic and art teacher, Amanda Burdin, announced the winners of the annual art contest. PICTURE 26-27

Florence 1

Debra Heimbrook, school librarian at Lucy T. Davis Elementary, hosted #JustAChicken authors Langston Moore and Preston Thorne  in February. They inspired the 5K-4th grade students to read, write, and always do their best. PICTURE 28

Changes for 2018-19 in personnel in Florence District One include the following vacancies which have been filled but not yet announced:

Toni Allen at Greenwood Elementary

Traci Cagle at Dewey L. Carter Elementary


Beverly Shearon at South Florence High School

Debra Heimbrook at Lucy T. Davis Elementary


Region 8:  Horry, Georgetown, Williamsburg 

Region 8 Coordinator - Dawn James, Aynor High, Horry  


Amanda Kraft, a second year Library Media Specialist at Loris Elementary School was chosen as the March 2018 Tech Innovator of the Month.  This is a distinct honor given to one teacher in the entire district each month. Amanda is innovative, technologically savvy and a great resource for her students and teachers. PICTURE 29

Friday, April 13th The Aynor High School JROTC program sent 18 students to Aynor Elementary School to read to the fourth and fifth graders. In an attempt to spread the word about Blue Jackets Read, our school wide reading program, and to promote literacy, the students were divided into pairs of two and sent to a classroom to read for 15 minutes and then have a short discussion about reading. Overall, the fourth and fifth graders really enjoyed the experience and so did Aynor’s JROTC program. We hope to carry on with the reading project in the future and encourage younger kids to pick up a book and put down the phones from time to time.By Cadet Karissa Krause PICTURE 30-31


Region 9A: Charleston 

Region 9A Coordinator - BT Bouton, Fort Johnson School, CCSD


The week of February 26 Jennie Moore Elementary had Patricia Polacco visit and talk to all students. It was a wonderful experience and the students were entranced by her story-telling!

Ms. Shellhaas has been working on breakout boxes with 4th graders at Jennie Moore all year! The students have enjoyed figuring out the clues and problem-solving to break in to the boxes. They look forward to their last box which will be timed! PICTURE 32-33

Camellia Harris of C. E. Williams Middle School was elected as SCASL treasurer, and Christy James was named IT chair.

Simmons-Pinckney Middle School was proud to announce that SPMS 6th grader Breon Owens won the Cynthia Graham Hurd-St. Andrew's Branch Charleston County Public Library Black History Month Contest. CCPL's Patrice Smith awarded Breon with a trophy, gift card, and Certificate of Accomplishment. The entire school worked on Black History Month essays to submit on the topic of "What can I learn from someone of another race?" Breon won for his original thoughts and excellent essay. School Librarian Cindy Philbeck collaborated with Teachers Kelsey Baldwin, Tiffany Edwards, Kelly Hodo, and Marjorie White to make the Black History Month essays a school-wide project and part of the school's observance of Black History Month 2018.  SPMS submitted 110 essays to the Hurd-St. Andrew's Library contest.


Breon Owens won the Cynthia Graham Hurd Black History Month essay contest.

Phenomenal author visit by Jason Reynolds: James Island Charter High School continues its tradition of inviting authors to speak with our students about their books and their lives.  Our most recent visitor was Jason Reynolds, author of several YA and middle school books. We gave copies of Boy in the Black Suit to 200 students and encouraged our students to read his other novels.  Mr. Reynolds held our students spellbound with his stories of his life and how he eventually learned to appreciate literature as a gateway to knowledge.  He emphasized that books need to reach students - that it's not that students don't like to read, they have just not yet found the right book. I think the best way to describe what he brought to our students is to let them tell you (edited for spelling & capitalization only):  

"I think his story is very relatable to all kids but more importantly, less privileged kids. Both my parents have low paying jobs and my whole life I’ve been told that I’m going to be just like them. I disagree. Jason Reynolds related to me because he did what everyone told him he wouldn’t and even though he faced hard times, he eventually pushed through it and made his dream a reality. I think kids need to hear his story because many adults preach there’s only one way to success— perfect grades and college."

"His speech was absolutely phenomenal. Attending his talk made me rethink the way I thought about reading. I hate reading, but meeting him made things a lot fuzzier. I don't hate reading. I hate reading books that don't have diversity. I read a bit of Miles Morales and it instantly became my favorite book. His writing style is just WOW and seeing him talk about his life and motivations just transformed how I look at books. 10/10 would recommend."

These comments remind us that we must continue to reach and teach all our students, not just the book clubbers.  His books and others that provide authentic stories continue to be popular in our school, and we work to make them available and visible to our students, both in the library and in the classroom.   

James Island Charter High School library and students spearheaded a voter registration drive in coordination with the League of Women Voters and the National Council of Negro Women.  Any student who will be 18 by November is eligible to register. We met several times, and accommodated the students' schedules by meeting both during last period of the day (early out students) and after school (everyone else).  The activity culminated in a lunch-time event when our volunteer students set up on the stage in our cafeteria and registered students to vote using chromebooks online or paper forms. Several dozen students were registered, and we continue the push to register our students by working with government classes and handing out information cards in the library.


JICHS voter registration drive

Pinckney ES Holds Read Like a Sports Star Week

Posted on 03/07/2018

Read Like a Sports Star week at Charles Pinckney Elementary expanded from an initiative to bring community members into the school to support literacy.

Fourteen years ago during Read Across America week, Jennifer Thrift invited doctors throughout the community to read to the students at Charles Pinckney in honor of Dr. Seuss’ birthday. Each year more and more doctors attended the annual event. Four years ago she decided to expand the community outreach to add Read Like a Sports Star week in conjunction with the Dr. Seuss’ birthday celebration.

This past year they had several athletes share the importance of literacy with the students at Charles Pinckney Elementary. Teams in attendance this year were: CofC Women’s Soccer, Wando Swimming, Wando Boys Lacrosse, Wando Boys Soccer, Wando Volleyball, Cario Volleyball, Cario Baseball, Wando Football, Wando Softball, Wando Boys Basketball, Lowcountry Lacrosse LLC, and Oceanside Collegiate Academy athletes.

The students spent time reading to classes, small groups, and individual students. They even went to recess with some of the classes. This is a great opportunity for older kids to give back to their community and share what they have learned throughout their time in Charleston County School District.


Read Like a Sports Star


Region 9B: Berkeley, Dorchester 

Region 9B Coordinator - Laura Linder, Cane Bay Middle, Berkeley


Patricia Candor, Librarian at College Park Elementary, received National Board recertification this year.

Rosie Herald, Librarian at Phillip Simmons Elementary, has been named PSE’s 2018 teacher of the year.

Terry Kent, Librarian at Westview Middle School, will be retiring at the end of this year.  She has worked at Westview Middle School for the last 5 years. Prior to that she was at Berkeley High School for 17 years.  She also worked for 10 years for the Charleston County Library.

Sylvia Garland, Librarian at Sangaree Elementary School, will be retiring with 25 years in school libraries. 11 years I was an assistant at Devon  Forest, 2 years as a school librarian at a private school and 12 years as a school librarian at Sangaree Elementary.

Susan Garrison, Librarian at Howe Hall AIMS, will be retiring at the end of this school year.

Cane Bay Middle School had guest Author and Illustrator, Jamie Gandy, visit Friday, March 23rd.  Librarian, Mrs. Linder and Mrs. Wade, the art teacher, collaborated to provide students with an example of how they can use their art talents to become a book illustrator AND maybe even and author too!  Mr. Gandy included in his presentation about how rare it is for one book to have the same author and illustrator. He also did an interactive reading of his book, This Ocean is Weird and did a drawing lesson with the banana from his book, I’m Famous, the Unpeeled Story of a Banana.  The entire 5th grade was invited to participate in the presentation.  Mr. Gandy is from Savannah, Georgia. He is an affordable, captivating, and fun author/illustrator you could have at your school too!

8th Grade Day at the Cane Bay Library

Part of having a quality media center is always evaluating and re-evaluating your programs.  As much as we were trying, my coworker and I were struggling getting the buy-in we wanted with our 8th grade students this year.  They just thought they were too cool to come to the library!  So we looked at different sources of information we had access to (end of year survey from last year’s 8th graders) and an informal survey we did with our current 8th graders.  We saw a trend of 8th graders feeling like our library did not have books ‘for them’ or the books ‘they wanted’ which really came down to YA books like their siblings/older friends had access to at the high school.  Note, we have 5th grade at our school so we walk on eggshells with younger students having access to YA books already.  We made the decision to purchase the books they wanted and make it to where ONLY 8th graders could check them out giving them ownership to a part of the library that was created just for them!  It has been a big hit!!

To make all of the 8th grade students aware of their new section of the library and to just get them back in to see their awesome librarians, we created 8th Grade Day at the Cane Bay Library.  We asked our 5th – 7th grade teachers to try to limit their students visiting the library on that Friday to only those with absolute necessity so that we could really have time to connect with our 8th graders, make recommendations, and have some fun (trivia where everyone was a winner) with them on their special day.  We will be doing this again.

CBM students taking a look at books from the 8th grade only section.

Cane Bay Middle will host their annual Poetry Picnics and Poetry Slams April 26th and 27th.  The fifth and sixth grade students at Cane Bay Middle will be invited to the library during their lunch time to a Poetry Picnic.  The Poetry Picnic is our way of showing 5th and 6th graders what a Poetry Slam looks like so they will be motivated to participate Poetry Slams in the future!  Seventh and Eighth grade students will read original poetry or poems they have chosen from books to share with the students as well as teaching them about Poetry Slams.  SNAP SNAP SNAP! The 7th and 8th graders will present their original or borrowed poems at the Poetry Slam.

Marrington Elementary School is going to the dogs…..and the students are over the moon!  In conjunction with the Spring Book Fair that had a “pet theme,” a group of therapy dogs came trotting into school to visit classrooms and bring smiles to the students of Marrington!


Marrington Elementary Book Fair pictures


Mrs. Linder, librarian at Cane Bay Middle, received 2 Donorschoose grants in the month of April.  Both grants were written as a result of attending a session at SCASL conference which gave her the idea of some things she would like to add to her library services.  She received 60 picture books for a project she called, “My Special Shelf” which will give students in the Autism class at her school special books they can check out from their special shelf.  The other project added over 100 picture books to their professional collection for teachers to use for read-alouds or to support standards in their subject area. This session was presented by another Region 9B librarian, Jennifer Traeger, who is the librarian at Ashley Ridge High School in Dorchester Two School District.

Dorchester 2

Donna Moyer will be retiring from Fort Dorchester High School at the end of this school year.

The students and teachers at Beech Hill Elementary (Media Specialist Jeni Nix) in Dorchester District Two were delighted to get a visit from award-winning children’s author, Patricia Polacco. In the pictures, she is sharing her famous “Keeping Quilt” that she wrote about in a book by the same name. She also inspired one of the students to create her own “Keeping Quilt” with her family. Finally, Ms. Polacco shared the first book she wrote, Meteor, with the students and then brought a piece of the meteor that inspired the book for all students to touch and make a wish on. Shown are Teri Bazzle with her granddaughter, Maddie Augustine, as they make their wishes on the falling star while Ryan Fontan patiently waits for his turn. PICTURE 42-44

Girls Varsity Softball Team Reads to Kindergarten StudentsOn March 27, 2018 the girls’ varsity softball team of Ashley Ridge High School traveled to Sand Hill Elementary to read to Kindergarten students.  Jennifer Traeger, Librarian at Ashley Ridge, said this was something she had been wanting to start for a while. “I always had this idea of bringing our high school students over to the elementary school to read to the students, I just hadn’t acted on it yet.  I finally just reached out to Sand Hill and Mrs. Conroy loved the idea and we set it up. I think this is a great way to bring the enjoyment of reading to all the students involved. Our students are wonderful role models for our elementary school kids and to see the smiles on the kindergarten student’s faces during reading time was precious.”

The team spent about 2 hours reading to four different kindergarten classes. The classes came to the Library and each high school student was paired with about 3 or 4 kindergarten students to read to.  


Ashley Ridge Softball Team reads to students at Sandhill Elementary


Taylor O’malley


Ally Eubanks


Tes Cooper

Region 10: Beaufort, Colleton,  Hampton I, Hampton 2, Jasper 

Region 10 Coordinator - Dr. Linda Waskow, Beaufort Elementary School, Beaufort 


Tabatha Dewitt is the new media center librarian at Colleton County High School.  She replaced Lynne Douglas Simmons who retired in August


Sandra Shetley retired from Hendersonville Elementary School in January 2018, and Kendra Thacker, a retired media specialist, is working as a long-term substitute.

Pearlie Simpson, a retired classroom assistant, is now in charge of the media center at Black Street Early Childhood Center.

Robin Stephens at Cottageville Elementary School earned her MLIS degree is December 2017 at USC.

Hampton 2

Hampton County School District 2 has 2 media specialist vacancies:  Estill Elementary and Estill Middle-High School. Please contact Mrs. Loretta Darien, Human Resources Coordinator, [email protected]

Region 11: Special / Independent

Region 11 Coordinator - Elizabeth Wain, Christ Our King Stella Maris


Region 13: Retired

Region 13 Coordinator - Elizabeth Gregory, Retired