The 2024 South Carolina Teacher of the Year is Aynor High School’s English Educator, Renée Atkinson

 The 2024 South Carolina Teacher of the Year is Aynor High School’s English Educator, Renée AtkinsonRenée Atkinson, an English teacher at Aynor High School in Horry County School (HCS) District, has been honored with the prestigious title of the 2024 South Carolina Teacher of the Year. Her exceptional dedication to education and commitment to her students have earned her this esteemed recognition.

Announced by State Superintendent of Education Ellen Weaver at the annual South Carolina Teacher of the Year Gala held at the Governor’s mansion in Columbia, Renée Atkinson emerged as a shining example of excellence in teaching. Weaver commended Atkinson, stating, “Renee pours her heart and soul into the lives of her students each day at Aynor High School, and is truly deserving of this prestigious honor.”

This accolade is a culmination of Atkinson’s 21 years in education, 17 of which have been spent in Horry County Schools. Despite initially pursuing a bachelor’s degree in history with a minor in English from Clemson University, she found her true calling in teaching. Renée furthered her education with a master’s in secondary English from Francis Marion University and an education specialist degree in curriculum and instruction from Liberty University. Her dedication to professional growth is evident through her National Board Certification.

Among the finalists for the 2024 South Carolina Teacher of the Year were Ann Reamer of Lexington School District 2, Mandy DeMeio of York District 4, Amsavalli Velayuthan of Jasper County and Wayne Williams of York 2. Renée Atkinson’s passion for teaching and her focus on building positive relationships with her students set her apart from these distinguished educators.

“The joy and passion that comes from being a teacher and stories of students that can motivate teachers to stay with it, and continue to work hard for our children,” shared Atkinson, reflecting on her teaching philosophy.

Renée Atkinson’s recognition underscores her unwavering dedication, passion and impact in the field of education, making her a deserving recipient of the title 2024 South Carolina Teacher of the Year. Additionally, Atkinson will represent South Carolina in the National Teacher of the Year competition, further highlighting her exceptional contributions to education.

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