SREB and South Carolina


SREB and South Carolina

An overview of SREB programs and services and how South Carolina participates in them.

Appropriations from member states support core SREB services. SREB leverages the longstanding commitment of member states to attract external funding for additional programs and services that benefit member states. States may also choose to join targeted networks for additional fees.



Goals for Education | Monitoring State Policies

Monitoring and reporting to assist education leaders and policymakers as they shape public policy. SREB tracks trends and analyzes the progress of all 16 SREB states in each area in the Challenge to Lead 2020 Goals for Education and provides Legislative Reports that detail legislative and budget actions in each state.

SREB’s Insights data tool allows leaders to explore actions across states, delve into a topic for a deeper understanding or select a detailed state report. >

College and Career Readiness

Intensive work to help states implement essential components of SREB’s recommendations for statewide college and career readiness. These include assessing high school juniors to determine their progress toward the state’s readiness standards — and requiring those who are underprepared to take transitional courses in 12th grade.

SREB profiles summarize each state’s progress on the recommendations through fall 2016. >

Benchmarking Implementation of College- and Career-Readiness Standards 

Tracks and reports progress on implementation of college- and career-readiness standards and related reforms across states. Based on this research, SREB staff support these states through reports, meetings and technical assistance.


In May 2017, SREB published Benchmarking State Implementation of College- and Career-Readiness Standards: Alignment of Instructional Materialsa regional report on implementation across states, strong state efforts and actions for improvement — plus profiles that describe each state’s efforts in detail, highlight notable actions and offer recommendations for moving forward.

The report highlights South Carolina’s notable efforts in establishing conventions for developing, reviewing and selecting aligned instructional materials.

Technical Assistance

In April 2017, SREB launched a state accountability network with  monthly conference calls for SREB member states to share ideas and discuss questions about redesigning and implementing state accountability systems under the Every Student Succeeds Act. Three state education agency leaders from South Carolina participate.


In July 2016, project staff facilitated a virtual meeting of state education agency leaders to discuss findings and implications of the Benchmarking State Implementation of College- and Career-Readiness Standards: Professional Learning reports. Eight stakeholders from South Carolina attended.

Project staff presented information on state efforts to align instructional materials on and state accountability systems under the Every Student Succeeds Act at SREB’s annual Meeting of Legislative and Governors’ Staff in September 2017. Five participants from South Carolina attended. >

Career and Technical Education 

State Leaders Forum 

South Carolina attendees at SREB’s State Leaders Forum on policies for high-quality career and technical education in November 2016: 6 >

    Educator Effectiveness

    Advises state and district leaders as they develop strategies to support the professional growth of teachers and principals. SREB serves as a technical advisor to state education agencies, conducts needs assessments and focus groups to help states plan and evaluate implementation, spotlights inspiring stories of local practice and convenes stakeholders at regional meetings.

    Technical Assistance

    SREB partnered with the South Carolina Department of Education to support implementation of a statewide educator effectiveness strategy. The strategy includes elements such as training for school and district administrators, development of online learning modules for teachers and working with five partner districts to create long-term professional learning plans. SREB staff visited the department in October 2017 to help implement the strategy.

    SREB staff presented information before a South Carolina legislative committee on teacher recruitment and retention strategies in October 2017.

    SREB staff responded to four information requests from South Carolina stakeholders in the last 12 months. Constituents requested SREB analysis related to teacher recruitment and master teacher strategies.

    In the last 12 months, SREB’s educator effectiveness team provided technical assistance, brokered expertise and provided policy and practice resources to South Carolina state legislators and their staff, state education agency staff, district administrators, principals and teachers.


    A state team from South Carolina attended the SREB educator evaluation meeting, Improving Educator Effectiveness: Lessons Learned, in November 2017. State teams included multiple stakeholders: state agency leaders, teacher association representatives, district superintendents, principals and classroom teachers. Department staff attended a regional community of practice meeting following the multi-stakeholder meeting.

    SREB staff presented information to attendees of the SREB Meeting of Legislative and Governors’ Staff in September 2017.

    The South Carolina Department of Education sent a representative to SREB’s annual educator effectiveness convening in March. She participated in working sessions with peers from nine other SREB states.

    reports and data

    SREB produced resources for South Carolina leaders during the last 12 months including:

    Evaluator Training: A Guide for States, September 2017, which spotlights seven components associated with effective training for observers of teachers

    Feedback on Teaching: A Fresh Look, July 2017, with strategies for district and school leaders to establish and sustain better feedback practices

    Student Surveys: A Fresh Look, inMay 2017, covering the practical implications for state, district and school leaders seeking to use emerging student survey tools

    Information Request Series, beginning January 2017, with responses to SREB stakeholders’ questions on topics such as educator evaluation, teacher certification, and principal recruitment and retention incentives

    Educator Effectiveness Bill Tracker interactive tool, updated weekly to allow constituents to track legislative bills across eight areas, including teacher preparation, evaluation and professional learning

    A bi-weekly educator effectiveness e-newsletter >

    Teacher Preparation

    SREB’s Teacher Preparation Commission met during 2016, 2017 and will meet in 2018 to develop practical and effective statewide recommendations to improve teacher preparation programs.

    The Commission published its first report, More than the Numbers: Teacher Preparation Data Systems State Policy and Recommendations, in September 2017. 

    Postsecondary Education


    SREB’s Commission on College Affordability in the South recommended policies and practices to keep college costs within reach of all students. In addition to Commission’s report, policymakers can draw on updated regional and individual state affordability profiles to understand how costs impact families at different income levels.

    SREB convened state higher education agency academic officers in October 2017 to discuss factors that impact college affordability. Attendees learned from each other about new policies for tuition, fees, financial aid, transfer, textbook costs, online courses, collaboration with K-12, readiness, and serving returning adults. A representative from the South Carolina Commission on Higher Education participated.

    SREB assisted South Carolina policy staff with a request for information on postsecondary financial aid issues and technical assistance with higher education planning. 

    State Services

    Connects policymakers with custom information, presentations and assistance on education issues as they arise. Leaders in member states are encouraged to contact SREB for data, analysis and advice.

    SREB staff visited South Carolina to meet with legislators and staff, and attend committee meetings in 2017.

    Throughout 2016-17, legislators, legislative staff and governors’ staff from South Carolina requested assistance on topics including higher education data, at-risk students, educator recruitment, college cost of attendance, financial aid, special education services, school enrollment data, and career and technical education credit requirements.


    SREB state services convenes legislative and governors’ staff from across the SREB region each fall to discuss topics that will likely be on agendas during upcoming legislative sessions. South Carolina staff were among those from 10 SREB states at the 2017 meeting.

    SREB’s Legislative Advisory Council meets twice annually, once in the winter and again at the annual Legislative Work Conference. The conference is for legislators designated by their state leadership to attend. South Carolina legislators were among those in attendance at the 2017 Legislative Work Conference and Legislative Advisory Council meetings. >


    Curriculum and School Improvement

    Advanced Career

    A new approach to career and technical education that combines college-readiness academics with hands-on, project-based assignments focused on modern careers. Advanced Career helps prepare students for as many options as possible after high school: a high-value job, college, community college or technical school. 

    South Carolina was the lead state working with SREB to develop the AC clean energy technology pathway.

    South Carolina participation in AC programs, 2017-18:

    Aerospace Engineering: 6 schools

    Clean Energy Technology: 4 schools

    Global Logistics and Supply Chain Management: 2 schools

    Integrated Production Technologies: 1 school

    Teachers trained: 14


    In July 2017, Patrick Smallwood of the Center for Advanced Technical Studies in Chapin won an Outstanding Advanced Career Teacher award. The South Carolina Department of Education was honored for Outstanding Advanced Career State Support. >

    Readiness Courses:
    Math Ready and Literacy Ready

    Courses specifically designed to help underprepared students succeed in the next phase of education. 

    Ready for college

    Courses to teach young adults the reading, writing and math skills they must have to succeed in college. They are taught in an engaging way that leads students to learn and think independently, read for information and solve problems.

    SREB Readiness Coureses are being implemented in selected schools during the 2017-18 school year.

    Ready for high school

    New courses for the transition from middle grades to high school. Underprepared students take the classes in eighth or ninth grade.

    South Carolina is one of 10 states that has participated in developing, field testing, training or piloting Ready for High School Literacy or Ready for High School Math. The courses are being implemented in selected schools during the 2017-18 school year. >

    High Schools That Work

    The nation’s largest school improvement program. HSTW strategies transform high schools into places where all students master complex academic and technical concepts. More than 1,150 schools in 30 states use the framework, its six design features and nine key practices, to raise student achievement and graduation rates.

    HSTW State Network

    Member states select schools to receive services. The fee for state membership in the consortium covers several services and visits.

    South Carolina is a member of the High Schools That Work state network, with 160 active schools in 2016-17.

    Contracts for Direct Support

    Schools, districts and states contract with SREB for targeted school improvement services such as on-site coaching, technical assistance and professional development. >

    Technology Centers That Work

    Helps shared-time centers produce high-demand, high-wage graduates. SREB provides staff development, technical assistance, publications and assessment services. The network includes almost 196 sites in 18 states.

    Active centers in South Carolina in 2016-17: 22


    Anderson District I & II Career Technology Center in Williamston was honored in July 2017 as an Outstanding Technology Centers That Work Site. >

    Making Middle Grades Work

    Engages state, district and school leaders in partnerships with teachers, students, parents and the community to raise student achievement in the middle grades. In addition to workshops and school visits, SREB links schools to the professional development resources they need.

    In 2016-17, 152 South Carolina middle grades schools participated in the network. SREB conducted 14 days of project-based learning professional development at Furman Middle School in Sumter County.

    Counseling for Careers

    Awakens students to career goals and connects them to the high school and postsecondary programs of study to succeed in them. SREB offers workshops, materials and coaching for districts, schools and technology centers, which then involve teachers, counselors, administrators, parents and community partners.

    SREB is conducting Counseling for Careers professional development and ongoing coaching in Sumter County Schools and Beaufort County School District.


    Professional Development
    For Teachers, Principals and Counselors

    College- and Career-Readiness Networking Conference

    Conference to share effective instructional strategies of the Literacy and Mathematics Design Collaborative frameworks. 

    South Carolina attendees at the July 2017 conference: 147 >

    Go Alliance Academy

    Strives to increase the postsecondary education and career success of all students by providing timely and relevant professional development in college and career readiness to school counselors, teachers, principals, career coaches and college access advisors. 

    South Carolina is one of 20 member states and one of the six founding states. 

    Go Alliance Academy Representative: Gerrick Hampton, Associate Director, Student Financial Support, South Carolina Commission on Higher Education >

    High Schools That Work Staff Development Conference

    Annual conference for thousands of school leaders, teachers and counselors from middle grades, high schools and technology centers across the country.

    South Carolina attendees at the July 2017 conference: 894 >

    Learning-Centered Leadership Program

    Works with district, state and university partners to prepare aspiring principals and school leadership teams to lead school reform to ensure that students are ready for college and careers. This program offers training, guidance and technical assistance.

    South Carolina attendees at the 2017 Annual Leadership Forum: 7 >

    Literacy and Math Professional Development

    SREB is partnering with states on a large-scale effort to help districts and schools adopt, spread and sustain effective literacy and math teaching strategies to meet their state’s college- and career-readiness standards.

    The Literacy Design Collaborative framework empowers language arts, science and social studies teachers to build meaningful assignments aligned to their state’s college- and career-readiness standards. Teachers take ownership of their professional growth, and students take ownership of their learning.

    The Mathematics Design Collaborative teaching framework uses formative assessment lessons — part assessment, part instruction — to help teachers know whether their students understand material they have been taught. Teachers learn to adapt assignments and engage students so they understand the hows and whys of math.

    During the 2017-18 school year, this SREB professional development reached South Carolina​ educators in 77 schools.

    South Carolina​ teachers, principals and trainers who participated in training and coaching: 1,040 >

    Project-Based Learning in Career Pathway Courses

    Training model for teachers in high-skill career and technical education programs and career pathway academic courses. Academic and career and technical education teachers improve assignments and assessments by working with business and industry partners to develop projects that require students to apply college- and career-readiness and technical-academic standards.

    Number of South Carolina teachers and administrators in training or coaching in 2016-17: 63

    Number of participating schools in South Carolina during 2016-17: 12


    Postsecondary Education

    Academic Common Market

    A tuition-savings program for college students in SREB member states who want to pursue degrees not offered by in-state institutions. Students can enroll in out-of-state institutions that offer their degree program and pay the in-state tuition rates.

    During calendar year 2016, approximately 2,100 degree programs were available, 151 institutions participated and nearly 3,300 new students were certified for study.

    Number of South Carolina students who participated in ACM during 2016: 124

    ACM State Representative: Saundra E. Carr, Academic Common Market Coordinator, South Carolina Commission on Higher Education >​

    Regional Contract Program

    Gives students the opportunity to earn a professional health degree from participating institutions in other states through in-state tuition rates at public institutions, or reduced tuition at private institutions. More than 600 students participate each year.

    Participating students from South Carolina: 117 >

    State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement 

    A nationwide system to open more high-quality distance education offerings for students and ease regulatory burden on institutions. SREB member states may opt in to offer distance education activities in other SARA states. ​

    South Carolina is an approved member of SARA.

    South Carolina SARA representative: Clay Barton, Licensing Program Coordinator, Postsecondary Institution Licensing,  Academic Affairs, South Carolina Commission on Higher Education >

    Fact Book and Data Exchange

    Publishes one of the nation’s most comprehensive collections of comparative data through a cooperative effort of state postsecondary education agencies. Data are updated annually on topics including population demographics, college completion, tuition and fees, cost of attendance, state appropriations and faculty salaries.

    South Carolina leaders receive the SREB Fact Book on Higher Education, as well as South Carolina: Featured Facts From the SREB Fact Book on Higher Education and the annual SREB State Data Exchange tables.

    South Carolina’s participating agency and SREB-State Data Exchange coordinator: Mary (Mim) Armour, South Carolina Commission on Higher Education >

    Council on Collegiate Education for Nursing

    Helps expand and strengthen schools of nursing to reduce the critical shortage of nurse educators needed to educate the nation’s registered nurses. The Council surveys institutions for nursing education trends and shares online graduate nursing courses.

    As of October 2017, five South Carolina institutions are members, listed here with their representatives to the Council:

    Charleston Southern University: Andrea Meir, Dean 
    Clemson University: Kathleen Valentine, Director
    Medical University of South Carolina: Gail Stuart, Dean
    University of South Carolina – Aiken: Thayer McGahee, Dean
    University of South Carolina – Columbia: Jeannette Andrews, Dean, SREB Nursing Council Executive Committee Member >

    Doctoral Scholars Program

    Supports minority students to help them earn Ph.D.s, begin careers at colleges and universities, and diversify campus faculties. The SREB-State Doctoral Scholars Program hosts the annual Institute on Teaching and Mentoring, the nation’s largest gathering of minority doctoral scholars, with more than 1,200 attendees.

    Scholars funded by South Carolina in 2016-17: 37
    2016 Institute attendees from South Carolina: 29

    Scholars South Carolina has supported since joining in 1993: 122

    Graduates since 1993: 76
    Graduates currently employed: 69
    Percent employed in education: 78

    South Carolina-supported Ph.D. students have attended these institutions since 1993:

    Clemson University
    Medical University of South Carolina
    University of South Carolina
    University of Texas at Arlington
    University of Virginia >


    Interstate Cooperatives

    Educational Technology Cooperative

    Membership group of state K-12 and higher education coordinating and governing boards that represent more than 800 colleges and universities and 3,100 school districts in SREB states. The ETC focuses member agencies and state policymakers on using technology wisely, helps states understand technology issues and forms an action agenda for effectively using technology in education. 

    South Carolina representatives attended the spring and summer webinars.

    South Carolina sent two attendees to the 2017 ETC annual meeting on teaching and technology. Trena Houp of the South Carolina Commission on Higher Education served on a discussion panel for personalized learning. Peggy Torrey of the South Carolina Council on Competitiveness presented a breakout session on the personalized learning initiative TransformSC.

    South Carolina ETC representatives helped determine SREB’s 10 Critical Issues in Educational Technology and served on working groups for revisions.

    Trena Houp of the South Carolina Commission on Higher Education is a member of the ETC executive committee.

    In May 2017, South Carolina sent a team of educators and policymakers to the SREB and digiLEARN Personalized Learning Regional Meeting to learn more about how to develop a comprehensive and sustainable effort. Houp represented higher education technology for South Carolina at the meeting.

    South Carolina ETC representative: Trena Houp, Program Manager, South Carolina Commission on Higher Education >

    Technology Purchasing Savings

    Schools, universities and agencies in SREB states saved $3.3 million on more than $33 million in technology purchases during fiscal year 2017 — double the FY2016 savings — through SREB’s participation in MHECtech discount agreements. Organizations in each of the 16 SREB states participated.

    South Carolina saved $87,682 on $886,566 in technology purchases in fiscal year 2017. >