Honea Path Elementary (2023)

  1. PLC Story
  2. PLC Practices
  3. Achievement Data
  4. Awards
  5. Resources

Honea Path Elementary (HPE) is a small school in the rural school district, Anderson School District 2 (ASD2). We have a total student population of 578 students. In 2021, under the leadership of new Superintendent Jason Johns, Anderson Two decided to implement Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) district-wide to shift from a teacher-focused to learner-focused culture and ensure learning for all ASD2 students. At HPE we recognized a need to improve student achievement for all. We were demonstrating growth, but our achievement was not at the level we desired. To fulfill our mission we knew changes were necessary and we believed the PLC process was the best platform to meet this need. Through this process, we realized there is a direct correlation between collaboration and student achievement. The interactions between teachers, administrators, and staff members encourage the growth of individual educators and students and enhance their ability to learn. New ways to manage problems are developed when teams collaborate and share information. Sharing ideas and instructional practices is essential to student success. 

The transition to the PLC process was made easier because of the opportunity for our administration to attend the Culture Keepers: Principal Leadership in a PLC at Work Institute in Atlanta in 2019. This opportunity provided a foundation for the work to begin in our school. School administration returned from the conference with knowledge and excitement about developing professional learning communities in our school. Following this conference, the school administration began implementing some of the PLC practices; however, the global pandemic suspended this work.  After successfully navigating Covid, HPE moved forward with this initiative under the leadership of Superintendent Jason Johns, who had prior training and fully supported the standard practices of professional learning communities. 

In 2019, all teachers received a copy of Learning by Doing (DuFour, DuFour, Eaker, Many, & Mattos, 2016) and began implementing practices. The learning-by-doing model is now the guide for our practices throughout our school.  

At the beginning of the 21/22 school year HPE staff attended a two-day Solution Tree workshop led by Jonathan Vander Els. This workshop aimed to introduce the key concepts and principles of the PLC framework to the educators within the district. Each grade level team took ownership of the PLC process by developing team norms. By establishing these shared agreements, teachers created a sense of collective responsibility and commitment to the PLC journey. 

Collaboration and support among teachers are crucial in our school. To achieve this, HPE determined the importance of setting aside dedicated time during the school day for team collaboration, analysis of student data, and intervention. This helps teachers create tailored interventions for students who are facing difficulties in mastering certain standards. Ultimately, this approach benefits all our students and ensures their success in the classroom.

Recognizing the need for strong leadership and guidance, team leads were selected from each grade level in August 2021. The team leads are compensated and meet regularly in monthly district-wide meetings where they discuss PLC practices, share experiences, and received support and training.  

In February 2022, the district funded all team leads to attend The Summit on PLC at Work in Phoenix. This national conference provided an opportunity for the team leads to learn from renowned PLC experts, engage in meaningful discussions, and gather innovative ideas to implement in their respective schools, energizing the initiative. Team leads that attended the Summit presented their key takeaways and insights to colleagues from around the school district during the ASD2 Instructional Summit. This internal summit served as a platform for educators to exchange ideas, celebrate successes, and learn best practices.  

To further enhance their understanding of effective PLC practices, several staff members visited Catoosa County, Georgia in the spring of 2022. During the visit, they observed the PLC practices implemented in the model PLC district and schools and learned valuable insights from their experiences, which they brought back to HPE. 

Moving into year two. 2022/2023, HPE continued to support and offer professional development for staff through Solution Tree. This included sending staff to conferences and workshops organized by Solution Tree. In September 2022, Julie Schmidt was invited to present her "Yes We Can" workshop, which focused on building a positive and empowering culture within PLC teams. In November 2022, our principal attended the "Amplify your Impact" conference in Charleston, SC. This provided a platform to explore leadership strategies, gain insights from other successful PLC districts, and bring back valuable knowledge to guide the school’s collaborative PLC teams in their work.  Also in November, our first-grade team and assistant principal attended the “School Improvement for All” Solution Tree workshop in Charleston, SC. Lastly, to strengthen subject-specific expertise and collaboration, representatives from HPE attended the Math PLC at Work Summit in Houston in December 2022. 

Through these efforts and shared commitment to the PLC process, HPE built a strong foundation of shared understanding and commitment among educators. The ongoing collaboration, professional development opportunities, and exposure to successful PLC models have empowered teachers and administrators to work together towards a common goal of improving student learning and achievement for all.


1. Monitoring student learning on a timely basis.

At Honea Path Elementary, we have a process in place to create and implement a guaranteed and viable curriculum. This process ensures that all students have access to a high-quality curriculum that is aligned with standards and designed to promote their learning and achievement. Additionally, we have strategies in place to monitor student learning on a timely basis, allowing us to identify areas of strength and areas in need of improvement.

To create a guaranteed and viable curriculum, we follow a systematic approach that involves collaboration, alignment, and ongoing review. Here is an overview of our process:

Collaborative Curriculum Development: Teachers and administrators work together to collaborate on curriculum development. During our PLC meetings, we analyze and discuss how we will use the curriculum to ensure student learning. This collaborative approach ensures that the expertise and perspectives of educators across grade levels and subjects are taken into account. It fosters a sense of ownership and shared responsibility for the curriculum and student achievement.

Alignment with Standards: Our curriculum is aligned with state standards, district expectations, and learning goals. We carefully examine the standards and identify the essential knowledge and skills that students need to acquire at each grade level. This alignment helps us ensure that our curriculum is comprehensive and focused on key learning outcomes.

Curriculum Mapping: We use curriculum mapping tools and resources to document and organize our curriculum. This includes outlining the scope and sequence of content, identifying instructional resources and strategies, and mapping out assessments. Curriculum maps serve as a roadmap for teachers, providing a clear overview of what needs to be taught and when.

Ongoing Review and Reflection: We regularly review and reflect on our curriculum to ensure its effectiveness and relevance. We analyze student achievement from common formative assessments and unit assessments to determine effectiveness. We use this feedback to make adjustments and improvements to the curriculum and instruction as needed.

To monitor student learning on a timely basis, we employ several strategies to gather data and assess student progress:

Common Formative Assessments: Teachers use common formative assessments throughout the learning process to gather evidence of student understanding and skill development. These assessments are designed to provide immediate feedback to both teachers and students, allowing for timely adjustments to instruction.

iReady Diagnostic: We implement the iReady reading and math diagnostic assessments across grade levels and subjects to ensure consistency and comparability. Diagnostics allow us to monitor student learning on a larger scale and identify trends and patterns that inform instructional decisions.

Data Analysis: We analyze student performance data from assessments to identify areas of strength and areas in need of improvement. This analysis helps us identify individual student needs, instructional gaps, and areas where interventions may be necessary.

Intervention and Differentiation: Data is analyzed by teachers, administrators, and coaches a plan is created for students depending on their instructional needs. Based on the data analysis, we provide targeted interventions and differentiated instruction to students who require additional support or enrichment. Every grade level has one hour of time built into their schedule for intervention. During this time our interventionist, support staff, and teachers provide customized support according to student needs. This ensures that every student receives the necessary resources and strategies to meet their learning goals. 

Progress Monitoring: We regularly track and monitor student progress to assess the effectiveness of instructional strategies and interventions. This includes monitoring individual student growth over time and adjusting interventions as needed.

Overall, our school uses a collaborative approach to develop a guaranteed and viable curriculum that is aligned with standards. We employ various strategies to monitor student learning on a timely basis, allowing us to make data-informed instructional decisions and provide targeted support to students. Through this process, we strive to ensure that all students have access to high-quality education and are supported in their learning and achievement.

2. Creating systems of intervention to provide students with additional time and support for learning.

Honea Path Elementary is committed to providing students with additional time and support for learning through systems of intervention and extension. These systems are designed to address the diverse needs of our students, ensuring that every learner receives the necessary resources and opportunities to succeed. Here's how we create and implement these systems:

Data-Driven Decision Making: We use a data-driven approach to identify students who may require intervention or extension. This includes analyzing student performance data from common formative assessments, summative unit assessments, iReady math and reading diagnostics, and other sources. By examining data, we identify students who may be struggling or excelling in specific areas and determine the appropriate level of support needed. Ongoing assessment allows us to monitor the effectiveness of our instruction and student growth. 

Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS): We have implemented a Multi-Tiered System of Support framework to provide targeted interventions and extensions. This framework consists of three tiers:

a. Tier 1: Universal Instruction: All students receive high-quality instruction aligned with grade-level standards and best practices. Teachers use research-based instructional strategies and differentiation to meet the diverse needs of students in the general education classroom. Teachers meet weekly to discuss and plan how the instruction will be delivered. They discuss best practices and areas of historical weaknesses for each unit. This helps teachers address prerequisite skills needed for standards mastery. 

b. Tier 2: Targeted Intervention: Students who require additional support beyond the core instruction receive targeted interventions in small groups. These interventions are designed to address specific skill gaps or provide additional practice and reinforcement and are determined by common formative assessments and iReady diagnostic results. Teachers use evidence-based interventions and progress monitoring to track student growth and make instructional adjustments. A portfolio is created for all students who receive Tier 2 instruction. This contains progress monitoring data that will be discussed by the academic assistance team and the grade level team. Each grade level has one hour of scheduled “Go Time” for Tier 2 intervention.

c. Tier 3: Intensive Intervention: Students who require more intensive support receive individualized interventions tailored to their specific needs by highly trained personnel. These interventions may involve more frequent and intense instruction, personalized learning plans, or specialized programs. Intensive interventions are provided by intervention specialists or other trained personnel. Tier 3 progress monitoring data is reviewed by the academic assistance team monthly to determine the effectiveness of instruction and to determine whether the students are receiving the appropriate intervention in the most effective setting to meet their individual needs. 

Academic Student Intervention (ASIT) Team: This team consists of teachers, administrators, interventionists, and support staff who collaborate to develop intervention and extension plans for students. The ASIT teams meet regularly to review student data, assess progress, and make decisions regarding appropriate interventions or extensions.

Flexible Grouping and Scheduling: We utilize flexible grouping and are intentional with scheduling to maximize instructional time and provide targeted support. Students are grouped based on their specific needs, allowing for differentiated instruction and targeted interventions. This may involve regrouping students for specific subjects or skills, providing additional time for intervention during the school day, or offering extended learning opportunities beyond regular classroom hours.

Collaboration and Professional Learning: Teachers collaborate weekly within their grade-level or subject-area teams to share strategies, resources, and best practices for intervention and extension. Professional learning communities (PLCs) provide a forum for teachers to discuss student needs, analyze data, and develop instructional plans. Additionally, ongoing professional development opportunities are provided to equip educators with the knowledge and skills necessary for effective intervention and extension practices.

Family and Community Engagement: We communicate regularly with parents/guardians to keep them informed about their child's progress and provide resources for supporting learning at home. 

By creating and implementing systems of intervention and extension, we ensure that students receive the necessary time and support for learning. Through data-driven decision-making, a multi-tiered system of support, collaboration, and family engagement, we strive to meet the unique needs of every student and help them reach their full potential. This in turn builds the professional capacity of our teachers to work as members of high-performing collaborative teams that focus efforts on improved learning for all students.


3. Building teacher capacity to work as members of high performing collaborative teams that focus efforts on improved learning for all students.

Honea Path Elementary places a strong emphasis on building teacher capacity to work as members of high-performing collaborative teams. These teams play a critical role in our efforts to improve student learning for all. Here's how our high-performing collaborative teams focus their efforts on improved student learning:

Shared Vision and Goals: Collaborative teams have a shared vision and set clear goals for student learning. Annual achievement goals are created based on the achievement from the previous school year. They align their efforts with the district's mission and vision, as well as the goals outlined in the school improvement plan. This shared understanding ensures that all team members are working towards a common purpose and are committed to improving student outcomes.

Data-Informed Decision-Making: Collaborative teams use a data-informed approach to drive their decision-making. They analyze various forms of data, such as student assessments and progress monitoring, to identify areas of strength and areas in need of improvement. By examining data, teams can identify trends, patterns, and individual student needs, which informs their instructional practices and interventions.

Collaborative Planning: Teams engage in collaborative planning to design instructional strategies and interventions that meet the diverse needs of their students. They work together to develop common formative assessments, aligned with the curriculum and standards, to assess student progress and adjust instruction accordingly. Collaborative planning allows for the sharing of expertise, brainstorming of ideas, and the development of cohesive instructional plans.

Professional Learning Communities (PLCs): Collaborative teams function as professional learning communities (PLCs) where teachers engage in ongoing professional development and learning. PLCs provide a structured framework for collaboration, reflection, and continuous improvement. Teachers participate in weekly meetings to discuss student data, instructional strategies, and best practices. These meetings foster a culture of shared responsibility and professional growth.

Differentiated Instruction and Interventions: Collaborative teams prioritize differentiated instruction and interventions to address the unique needs of each student. They analyze student data to identify students who require additional support or enrichment. Based on this analysis, teams develop targeted interventions and extension activities to address individual student needs. Differentiated instruction ensures that every student receives the appropriate level of challenge and support to maximize their learning.

Ongoing Reflection and Assessment: Collaborative teams engage in continuous reflection and assessment of their practices. They reflect on the impact of their instructional strategies and interventions on student learning outcomes. This reflective practice allows teams to make data-driven adjustments, share successes and challenges, and refine their approaches to better meet the needs of their students.

Supportive Team Environment: Collaborative teams foster a supportive and positive team environment through individualized team norms. They value open communication, trust, and respect among team members. This environment encourages collaboration, risk-taking, and the sharing of ideas. Teachers feel supported and empowered to contribute their expertise and learn from their colleagues, ultimately leading to improved student learning.

By focusing their efforts on a shared vision, data-informed decision-making, collaborative planning, differentiated instruction, ongoing reflection, and a supportive team environment, our high-performing collaborative teams work together to improve student learning. Through their collective expertise and commitment, they create a culture of continuous improvement and ensure that all students have the opportunity to succeed.


Achievement Data Files

Additional Achievement Data

- During the 2021/2022 school year, every cohort of students who took the South Carolina SCReady state assessment increased the percentage of students who scored Meets/Exceeds in reading and math. 

- Since our current strategic renewal plan began in 20/21, we have met all our strategic renewal goals and even exceeded some future goals. 

- Great Expectations Model School - 19/20, 20/21, 21/22, 22/23

- Excellent School Report Card Rating - 21/22

- SC Palmetto Gold Award - 21/22