Garner takes over as District One’s new leader

Published 6:41 pm Friday, January 15, 2010

Dr. Ronald Garner became the new Superintendent of Spartanburg County District One Schools on January 1.
The District One Board of Trustees implemented a plan for the smooth transition of leadership in the Office of Superintendent when Dr. Jimmy Littlefield announced his plans to re
While one of the youngest superintendents in the state, Dr. Garners experience at all levels has prepared him for the position. His teaching and leadership experience encompasses elementary, middle, and high school.
He began his educational career in Spartanburg County School District Six in 1994 at Dawkins Middle
While principal at Chapman High School, under Dr. Garners leadership the school achieved significant increases in ACT and SAT scores, as well as the successful implementation of a school-wide literacy program which allows students to broaden their exposure to literature and literacy through many avenues.
The District One Board of Trustees appointed Dr. Garner Superintendent/Superintendent Elect in January, 2008, where he served from July 2008 until December 31, 2009. At the district level, Dr. Garner was instrumental in implementing improved truancy prevention measures, including working closely with the Spartanburg County Truancy Court. Under his leadership, the student attendance percentage has increased dramatically with the implementation of district-level truancy hearings. He also developed and implemented intensive staff development with assistant principals and aspiring administrators in District One, focusing on developing their talents and potential as instructional leaders in their schools.
Since becoming superintendent, Dr. Garner has “hit the ground running.” His first week has been filled with meetings with principals, secretaries, district-level administrators, maintenance, and many others.
In the next few weeks, Dr. Garner will be meeting with assistant principals, community leaders, board members, and getting into the schools. One way Dr. Garner has met the community already is by doing “car duty” at a different school every day in his first week. This has given the parents and students a chance to meet him face to face. He is taking every opportunity to meet as many stakeholders as he can since becoming Superintendent.
In his meetings with various stakeholders, Dr. Garner has outlined expectationswhat he expects from the staff and employees of District One and what they can expect from him as Superintendent. He has communicated that “he will represent our profession,” “promote the belief that cant is a word we will not use,” “encourage the practice of hiring the best possible teachers and administrators,” and “be an instructional leader and promote the belief that student achievement is the top priority of District One.”
Prominent in all the discussions he has led in his first week is that District One has a long-standing philosophy and culture of being “student-centered” and this has flourished under the leadership of Dr. Jimmy Littlefield and the board of trustees. Dr. Garner says this same philosophy and belief will continue and the push for excellence and achievement in all areas will continue under his leadership.
A native of Whitmire, S.C., he attended public schools and graduated from Whitmire High School in 1989. Dr. Garner continued his education at the University of South Carolina Spartanburg, graduating in 1994 with degrees in secondary education and biology. Dr. Garner received his master’s in education administration from the University of South Carolina in 1999, and his doctorate in educational leadership from South Carolina State University in 2005.
Dr. Garner is a member of the Inman Rotary Club, where he has served as president, the Foothills Area Chamber Council, and numerous educational organizations. He enjoys mentoring students through the Spartanburg District One Schools mentoring program. He and his family are members of New Prospect Baptist Church.
He has been married for ten years to Chapman High School and Clemson University graduate Kelly Grigg Garner, and they have three children, Colby (six), Caroline (four), and Chloe (two). Colby is in the first grade and Caroline is in the 4k program at Campobello Gramling School. The Garner family lives in Gramling, S.C. Dr. Garner says he enjoys spending time with his family, working on his farm with the cows, and watching sports.tire approximately 18 months ago.School, where he taught science and coached basketball and football for five years. His administrative posts included assistant principal and principal at Cowpens Middle School in Spartanburg School District Three. In 2003, he became principal of L.E. Gable Middle School in Spartanburg School District Six. In 2005, he became Chapman High Schools principal, where he served for three years.

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