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Brooks Selected As Interim Principal At Aiken Elementary

With nearly a decade of leadership experience as an Assistant Principal, Kristie Brooks is looking forward to a new assignment at a new level as interim Principal of Aiken Elementary School. 
Since July 2013, Brooks has served students and families in the Graniteville area as an Assistant Principal at Midland Valley High School. While a resident of Aiken, “The Valley” was where Brooks’ career in school administration began and where she developed a collaborative leadership style that’s built upon a foundation of trust, commitment and care. 
While Brooks says she’s going to miss the fantastic faculty, students and families at the high school, her own journey into motherhood sparked an interest in early learning that she’s grateful this interim opportunity will allow her to explore. 
Aiken’s Superintendent King Laurence notified the school board of the interim move at their regularly scheduled meeting January 10, 2023, and Brooks was on Aiken Elementary’s campus early the following morning working alongside the school’s retiring Principal Cindy Hewitt.
“Cindy retires Friday,” Brooks’ shared, “so I jumped right in to assist with carline, unit planning, and data meetings to learn all I can from her this week.”
Brooks made her debut appearance on the school’s news show Wednesday morning and is enjoying meeting and spending time with Aiken Elementary’s students, as well as the teachers and staff she’ll support and serve. 
“I 100 percent believe admin in the building are servant leaders,” she commented. “We are all here to serve our students. Since teachers serve students directly, I serve students best by supporting teachers and staff, sharing responsibilities and engaging them in my own learning and decision-making.” 
Brooks graduated in 2008 from Southern Wesleyan University with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Special Education, and attained a Masters of Education in Administration and Supervision from Anderson University in 2012. 
Before her work in administration, Brooks served as a Special Education Teacher in an inclusion classroom setting at Ridge Spring-Monetta High School and, prior to that, in a self-contained classroom for students with learning disabilities at Tanglewood Middle in Greenville. She is a special education teacher at heart, and is a firm believer that all students can learn. 
“We are excited to welcome Mrs. Brooks to the elementary level,” Assistant Superintendent for Elementary Schools Julie Revelle commented. “Her background in special education and administrative experience will be wonderful assets to Aiken Elementary as we strive to help all children reach their potential.” 
Brooks not only sees great potential in all students, but also recognizes the ability students with disabilities have in creating a caring, collaborative culture.
“If you can bridge the gap between general education and special education students,” she shared, “students and the entire school community grow in acceptance of all people and all abilities. Whether it’s through Buddy Clubs, Special Olympics or some other way, I’m excited to work with our teacher leaders, staff, students and families in planning how we’ll do that at Aiken Elementary as we work together to learn and grow to our fullest potential.”