School Board Names King Laurence As New Superintendent
Five months after taking on the role of interim superintendent for Aiken County Public Schools, veteran administrator King Laurence has been named as the school district’s permanent leader.
In a 7-2 vote following a four-hour special called meeting Tuesday, members of the Aiken County Board of Education selected Laurence to lead the District into the future.
“This is an extremely humbling honor for me and I am very grateful to have been given the opportunity to lead and support such a wonderful team of talented educators and professionals in a more permanent capacity,” Laurence stated Wednesday. “I very much look forward to working with the members of our board, our leadership team, administrators and teachers to chart a path of uninterrupted success for all Aiken County students.”
Laurence was previously appointed by the Aiken County Board of Education as the interim superintendent for Aiken County Public Schools on September 14, 2019.
Laurence has an educational career which spans three decades, with 22 years of service in Aiken County Public Schools. Prior to his position as the interim superintendent, he served as the District’s Chief Officer of Administration and Human Resources, a role he had held since 2016.
“It has been a pleasure to serve in the role of interim superintendent over the last five months,” commented Laurence. “Serving in that capacity only confirmed what I have come to know during my many years here in Aiken County, that this is a great place to serve because of the outstanding people in our organization and the tremendous support of our community.”
A graduate of the University of South Carolina Aiken in 1985 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Education, Laurence received his Master’s in Educational Administration in 1990 from the University of South Carolina. Laurence is licensed and certified to serve as a School Superintendent by the South Carolina Department of Education and has served in varied leadership roles for Aiken County Public Schools, including as an Associate Superintendent (2012-2016), Director of Federal Programs (2005-2012), and as a school Principal (1998-2005). Prior to his service in Aiken County, Laurence served as a Teacher and Administrator in the Edgefield County School District.
Laurence has represented Aiken County at the state level on the executive board of the South Carolina Association of School Administrators’ Instructional Leaders Roundtable, as president of the South Carolina Association of Title I Administrators, and as Conference Chair for the South Carolina Association of School Administrators. He is part of a number of professional organizations and has served on numerous Boards and Committees, including the South Carolina Reading Recovery Advisory Council and the South Carolina Association of School Administrators Instructional Leaders Divisions’ Executive Committee.
Locally, he serves as President of the Sunrise Rotary Club and has served on the Education Matters Board of Directors, a group he chaired from 2015-17. Laurence was a Charter Member of Aiken County First Steps and has served as a Board Member and Vice Chair of the Ruth Patrick Science Education Center Advisory Board (2013-16). Laurence is the 2016 Recipient of the Robert E. Alexander Outstanding K-12 Administrator of the Year Award and also received a State Leadership Award from the National Association of Federal Education Program Administrators (2012).
Laurence says he is excited to be in a position to offer even more support to teachers, staff and students in continuing positive gains in academic performance and leading improvement in classroom culture.
“We have seen obvious academic gains over the past 12 months and we absolutely want those trends to continue and expand in the future,” Laurence stated. “We will be looking at new programs and initiatives in the coming months to increase our ability to not only recruit, but retain the very best teachers, and to provide our students and teachers with additional support to ensure that our classrooms offer the highest-quality learning environments possible.”
“This is an exciting time in Aiken County Public Schools,” he added. “I am honored to serve as the new superintendent and look forward to leading our ONE TEAM family.”
LINK TO DISTRICT PRESS RELEASE: 2020 PR LAURENCE NAMED NEW SUPT