Thirty-six schools in Horry County and six in Georgetown County are among the 592 schools and career centers named by the S.C. Department of Education Wednesday as Palmetto Gold and Silver award recipients for the 2013-14 school year.
Schools were recognized for general performance, closing the achievement gap or qualifying in both categories. A school may be given the gold or silver designation within each of the two categories. The awards program began in 1998, and this is the sixth year that closing the achievement gap has been included in the program.
Schools in Horry County that received Palmetto Gold awards for general performance are: the Academy for the Arts, Science and Technology; the Academy for Technology and Academics; the Academy of Hope charter school; Aynor Elementary School; Aynor High School; Bridgewater Academy (middle) charter school; Burgess Elementary School; Carolina Forest Elementary School; Carolina Forest High School; Forestbrook Elementary School; Forestbrook Middle School; Green Sea Floyds Elementary School; Homewood Elementary School; Lakewood Elementary School; Loris Elementary School; Loris High School;
Midland Elementary School; Myrtle Beach High School; North Myrtle Beach High School; North Myrtle Beach Intermediate School; North Myrtle Beach Middle School; Ocean Bay Elementary School; Ocean Bay Middle School; Palmetto Academy of Learning and Success (both middle and elementary); Palmetto Bays Elementary School; River Oaks Elementary School; Seaside Elementary School; Socastee Elementary School; Socastee High School; St. James Elementary School; St. James Middle School; and St. James High School.
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Burgess, Carolina Forest, Forestbrook, Lakewood, Ocean Bay and Socastee elementary schools also received Palmetto Gold awards for closing the achievement gap.
Bridgewater Academy (middle), Carolina Forest High, Forestbrook Middle, Homewood Elementary, Loris Elementary, North Myrtle Beach Intermediate and St. James Middle also received Palmetto Silver awards for closing the achievement gap.
Conway High School received the Palmetto Silver award for general performance. Loris Middle School and Whittemore Park Middle School received Palmetto Silver awards for closing the achievement gap.
In the Georgetown County School District, Carvers Bay High School and Georgetown High School received Palmetto Gold awards for both general performance and closing the achievement gap. Waccamaw Elementary School, Waccamaw High School, Waccamaw Intermediate School and Waccamaw Middle School also received Palmetto Gold awards for general performance.
Schools receive general awards for overall performance based on their absolute and growth ratings and the growth index found on school report cards.
Awards for closing the achievement gap are based on academic gains made by students who fall into four subgroups: African-American students, Hispanic students, students receiving free or reduced-price meals, and students with disabilities, other than speech. If the performance of at least one of the subgroups is at or above the performance of white students and those who are not subsidized for school meals statewide, the school earns closing the achievement gap honors. A school receives recognition for growth in achievement if at least one subgroup meets the growth in achievement criterion.
Only 65 of the recipients were awarded the gold designation for both general performance and closing the achievement gap. About 19 percent of this year’s school recipients also are classified as high poverty, with more than 90 percent of their students receiving Medicaid and/or free or reduced meals.