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Opening South Carolina to Teach for America

(l-r) Front Row: Beryl Dakers, Barbara Rackes
Back Row: Wash James, Henry Barton, John Few, Reggie Lloyd, Susan Zais

Teach for America, a national non-profit organization that places new teachers in low-performing schools, will make its first entry into South Carolina during the 2011-12 school year. The program will bring thirty bright, young teachers for two-year teaching tenures in Florence, Orangeburg, Darlington and Clarendon Counties. The TFA team project focuses on helping welcome these new teachers from all across the US and making them quickly become comfortable in South Carolina.

ollowing a welcome barbeque for all new teachers, the group will set out to help find the news teachers affordable housing, furniture, invitations to participate in sports or other activities, gym memberships, and new friends. Facilitating these tasks for teachers new to South Carolina will help ease their adjustment and allow them to focus on enriching the communities through their teaching.

While group members expect the main elements of the project to be completed by mid-August, Opening South Carolina for Teach for America members hope to create a process that is repeatable in other areas or even other states - a method by which local individuals can band together to help these new teachers adapt quickly to their new surroundings and be prepared for the academic challenges they will face in the coming year.