Degrees and Certifications:
The Citadel-Bachelor of Science in Education; The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee-Master of Science in Educational Administration; The University of South Carolina-Educational Specialist in Educational Leadership; The University of South Carolina-Doctor of Philosophy in Educational Leadership
Dr. Sean Alford
Hope and enthusiasm are traditional hallmarks of a new school year – as they should be.
Who are we, as educators, if we cannot be excited, positive and upbeat about the opportunity to provide a high-quality education for the future generations of our community and our future world leaders? Ensuring academic and fiscal integrity and accountability for our students, stakeholders, and community is a serious charge for our organization, and we will never take that responsibility lightly. However, we also want to enjoy our work, and we do that through camaraderie with one another and our collective ONE TEAM mindset.
The “start” of the 2017-18 school year in Aiken County actually came a couple of days early as we welcomed all District employees to the USC Aiken Convocation center Monday, August 21, for our second consecutive back-to-school celebration event. During the event, our teachers, administrators and classified staff members put the excitement in their hearts on full display. We are already looking forward to next year’s celebration.
We know that today, we are closer to our goal of becoming the premier school district in our state. The excitement I witnessed across our District as students returned to class last Wednesday was remarkable and we have many things to celebrate here in Aiken County.
Here are just some of our most recent accomplishments:
- We established common learning expectations for all students through a teacher-generated, guaranteed and viable curriculum.
- Teacher and school leaders worked to establish a framework of common expectations and instructional practice.
- The percentage of primary students meeting proficiency expectations in literacy and numeracy has increased.
- Our accelerated students are served every day, in all core subject areas, Grade three through 12.
- Eighth-grade students now have access to Algebra I and Geometry.
- We have quadrupled the number of registered youth apprenticeships for high school students in just twelve months.
- Our high schools experienced an 81-percent increase in the number of Advanced Placement exams administered. North Augusta High School and Ridge Spring-Monetta High School saw an increase in AP exams administered of over 100 percent.
- We have a district-wide standard for instructional technology in every elementary school classroom and we are on pace to complete middle and high schools this year.
- Our student athletes and coaches brought home state championships in swimming, tennis, track, volleyball, and soccer.
- We now offer extended day programs in every elementary school and three middle schools.
- We have increased opportunities for teacher leadership – both formal and informal.
- We hosted our first Spoleto-type District Arts Festival.
- We worked together with Teacher Forum to produce a calendar that gives more time for teacher planning and workdays.
- We have increased equitable world language options for students across the district.
- We expanded our recognition of stellar professionals who now represent the District as Teacher of the Year, our First Year Teachers of the Year, Giving Even More award winners and Principal of the Year.
- We have dedicated a new school and renovated others.
- We have upgraded athletics facilities across the District.
- We have an award-winning Adult Education program.
As you can see, great things are taking place across Aiken County Public Schools. Our teachers are the backbone of our organization and led by their passion and professionalism we will soar to even greater heights in the weeks and months to come. Our students receive more support now than ever. We are challenging them to supply their best effort each day in our classrooms and they are responding to those higher expectations.
With the continued support and trust of our community, we look forward to the many great things our District will accomplish, and goals our teachers and students will reach and surpass during the 2017-18 school year. I am thrilled to be a part of this terrific ONE TEAM, and wish everyone all the best in their pursuit of personal excellence this year.
Dr. Sean Alford
Aiken County Public Schools Superintendent
2017 "Future-Ready" Editorial Series
In his new editorial series for 2017, Dr. Alford will address address impending workforce deficiencies in our community, and how the District is responding to it.
Future-Ready: Providing Solution-Driven (Not Product-Driven) Graduates Who Answer the Economic and Social Needs of Our Community
In his second "Future-Ready" editorial of 2017, Dr. Alford explores the District's work to transition ACPSD graduates from being Product-Driven to Solution-Driven graduates.
2016 "All Means All" Editorial Series
This second in Superintendent Alford's "All Means All" Editorial Series focuses on guaranteeing a quality educational experience for students learning English as a second language.
In the third installment of Superintendent Alford's editorial series "All Means All" he addresses the plight of families faced with daily financial challenges that threaten to overshadow the very importance of education in the home.
Aiken County has long been at the forefront of providing high-quality service to students with special needs. We use that history as motivation to stand strong for these students.
Entry Plan & Recommendations
Upon his entry into the school district in the 2015-16 school year, Dr. Sean Alford presented an entry plan to establish and outline a set of activities that served as a guide to his transition into the school district while encouraging stakeholder engagement and fostering a passion for teaching, learning and partnership development. The plan provided the framework for his first 100 days as superintendent and the following months through the end of the 2015-2016 academic year.
Following his first 100-days as superintendent in the 2015-16 academic year, Dr. Sean Alford and his Cabinet brought forward 28 recommendations for board approval. The recommendations are detailed in the linked document and are intended to propel Aiken County Public Schools on a path forward to a premier school district.