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Palmetto Gold and Silver winners announced for 2018 and 2019; Horry County Schools earns 19 awards each year

The South Carolina Department of Education announced Palmetto Gold and Silver award winners for 2018 and 2019 in recognition of high levels of academic achievement and student progress. Horry County Schools (HCS) earned 19 awards each year; eight Palmetto Gold and 11 Palmetto Silver in 2018, and five Palmetto Gold and 14 Palmetto Silver in 2019.

The State Board of Education approved new award criteria last May, following an analysis of data from state report cards issued in 2018 and input from principals, coordinated by the South Carolina Education Oversight Committee.

Nineteen District schools earned Palmetto Gold and Silver awards based on state report cards issued in the fall of 2018 for the 2017-2018 school year. Palmetto Gold award winners are HCS Early College High School, Ocean Bay Middle School, Socastee Middle School, Ten Oaks Middle School, Lakewood Elementary School, Conway Elementary School, Palmetto Bays Elementary School and St. James Intermediate School. Palmetto Silver winners are Aynor High School, Socastee High School, St. James High School, North Myrtle Beach Middle School, St. James Middle School, Myrtle Beach Intermediate School, Ocean Bay Elementary School, Ocean Drive Elementary School, Waterway Elementary School, St. James Elementary School and the Palmetto Academy for Learning Success.

Nineteen District schools also received Palmetto Gold and Silver award winners for state report cards issued October 1, 2019 for the 2018-2019 school year. Palmetto Gold winners are HCS Early College High School, Forestbrook Middle School, Socastee Middle School, Kingston Elementary School and Midland Elementary School. Palmetto Silver award winners are Aynor High School, Socastee High School, St. James High School, Ten Oaks Middle School, St. James Middle School, Ocean Bay Middle School, Aynor Elementary School, St. James Elementary School, Seaside Elementary School, Palmetto Bays Elementary School, River Oaks Elementary School, Ocean Drive Elementary School, Riverside Elementary School, and the Palmetto Academy for Learning Success.

Award criteria for elementary and middle schools include two indicators; Academic Achievement and Student Progress. To be eligible for a Palmetto Gold award, elementary and middle schools must have an Excellent rating on both indicators or a combination of an Excellent and Good rating on the two indicators. To be eligible for a Palmetto Silver award, elementary and middle schools must meet one of three combinations of ratings: Average Academic Achievement and Excellent Student Progress; Good Academic Achievement and Good Student Progress; or Excellent Academic Achievement and Average Student Progress. 

Award criteria for high schools include four indicators; Academic Achievement, Preparing for Success, Graduation Rate and College and Career Readiness. To earn a Palmetto Gold award, high schools must receive an Excellent rating on three out of four indicators, have a Good rating on the fourth indicator and have an overall rating of Excellent or Good. To be eligible for a Palmetto Silver award, high schools must have a minimum rating of Good on three out of four indicators, no rating lower than Average on the fourth indicator and have an overall rating of Average or above.

Schools earning Palmetto Gold and Silver awards will receive a flag for display from the South Carolina Department of Education.