DCSD’s Dr. King selected for inaugural cohort of afterschool leadership initiative
The Riley Institute at Furman University has selected Dr. Omoro King, director of elementary education for the Darlington County School District, to participate in South Carolina Afterschool Leaders Empowered (SCALE), a new initiative that equips afterschool and summer learning leaders in the state with the tools they need to grow and improve their programs.
King is one of 21 emerging afterschool leaders to be selected for the inaugural cohort.
The initiative is offered in partnership with and funded by a $1.3 million grant from the South Carolina Department of Education as part of the monies the agency received from the American Rescue Plan to address the academic impact of COVID-19, particularly among youth in need of additional support to complete unfinished learning.
King began serving in the district in early 2021. He is tasked with assisting the assistant superintendent of curriculum, instruction and assessment in providing leadership and support to elementary and middle schools.
He also develops, implements and evaluates educational programs and services. He has previously worked as a middle level principal, elementary school principal, assistant principal and mathematics teacher. King holds a Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership and Supervision as well as an Educational Specialist degree in Educational Leadership and Supervision from Wingate University.
He also holds a Master of Arts in Educational Leadership from Cambridge College and a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics from the University of South Carolina.
“I am honored to be selected to participate and grow through the SCALE program and cannot wait to share my experiences with my fellow educators,” King said. “Afterschool and Summer Programs invest in students’ futures by providing engaging learning experiences, developing positive relationships, and supporting equitable access to resources for all children.”
Selected participants represent nearly a third of the state’s school districts, a variety of organizations, and a mix of rural, suburban and urban areas.
Taking place over the course of 10 months, SCALE offers a curriculum that touches on topics such as school-community partnership development, program sustainability, and youth mental health and is led by national and local afterschool and summer learning leaders. In addition to convening on Furman’s campus for a weeklong intensive and participating in monthly webinars, members of the cohort will take a field trip to a nationally-acclaimed summer learning program and work on a capstone project related to afterschool or summer learning.
High-quality afterschool and summer learning programs have been shown to improve student achievement, life skills, and mental health, all while helping working families keep kids safe. For more than a decade, the Riley Institute has conducted work in the afterschool field at the national level.
“Inspired by the impact we’ve made through our national afterschool policy fellowship, we’re eager to help strengthen and expand access to phenomenal programs that are already in place across the state,” said Amy Keely, SCALE director. “In doing so, the Riley Institute is advancing its goals of creating greater opportunity for students and their families in South Carolina.”