New Logo.PNG

Hundreds attend District Five Magnet Fair featuring five new magnet programs

Irmo, SC – More than 270 parents, students and community members attended Lexington-Richland School District Five's Magnet Fair on January 4. The event at the Center for Advanced Technical Studies featured interactive booths where visitors talked with staff and students one-on-one and learned more about magnet programs in the district.

This year’s event included information on four new magnets that are being implemented through a $13.7 million federal Magnet School Assistance Program (MSAP) grant the district was awarded in September 2017.

District Five’s magnet director Sara Wheeler has been amazed at the progression since the first programs were implemented in 2013.

“What we have seen steadily over the last five years is a growing interest, an increased number of participants and an enthusiasm that is really amazing to watch,” Wheeler said.

Many parents in attendance were impressed with having several options and say it is a significant benefit for their children.

“We have four children and they are all different so it is very beneficial for them to see that they have choices,” said parent Michael Shurtleff. “One thing we really love about the fair is seeing students from the schools showcasing their magnet program for everyone to see.”

The district’s new magnet programs include:

-H. E. Corley Elementary School Montessori Magnet

-I AM Escolares at Irmo Middle School, a district-wide academic magnet program for middle school students. The program is an expansion of the district’s elementary academic magnet Escolares Academy

-Leaphart Elementary School STEAM Magnet

-Nursery Road Elementary School Arts Magnet

-The IB Career-related Magnet at Irmo High School (in partnership with the Center for Advanced Technical Studies)

Many of the district’s magnet themes were developed in response to a community-wide survey administered in fall 2012. The district’s current magnet offerings are as follows:

Dutch Fork Elementary School Academy of Environmental Sciences uses the rich local environment and school campus to study core subjects through the lens of earth, water, and space. Students will have opportunities to be guided in their learning by scientists, teachers, naturalists, historians, artists and musicians.

STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) program at Dutch Fork High School is an honors magnet program that accelerates and enriches learning experiences for students who are academically gifted and have an interest in a STEM related major and career. Implemented in the fall of 2005, the program offers accelerated learning experiences; allowing students to pursue AP courses, research and/or internships in their field of interest as early as the tenth grade.

Escolares Academy at Harbison West Elementary School is an academically gifted magnet program. It provides elementary gifted students the opportunity to learn, grow and develop to their maximum potential by providing engaging educational experiences that are designed to enable gifted students to develop their unique gifts and pursue their natural talents and interests.

H. E. Corley Elementary School Leader in Me Magnet is a whole-school transformation model that acts like the operating system of a computer — it improves performance of all other programs. Based on The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People®, The Leader in Me produces transformational results such as higher academic achievement, fewer discipline issues, and increased engagement among teachers and parents. Students are equipped with the self-confidence and skills they need to thrive in the 21st century economy.

Irmo Middle School International Academic Magnet (iAM) offers students opportunities to develop competencies in leadership, communication, fine arts, and entrepreneurship within the international community. Students will collaborate, share opinions, and research with students in classrooms across the nation and around the globe. The program will establish partnerships with local and state corporations and entrepreneurs to provide students with authentic examples of global citizenship.

Irmo High School International School for the Arts offers a rigorous, standards-based curriculum that challenges students intellectually and creatively through arts-infused learning embedded in a global approach. Teachers will deliver much of the curriculum within their content areas, including concepts, issues, and themes, through the lens of global world-wide visual and performing arts.

IB (International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme) at Irmo High School is an academically rigorous two-year program of study that includes 13 courses, an extended essay, and creativity, action and service requirements. All IB courses require significant writing skills that develop over the two-year period, in addition to reading and higher level thinking skills. Students write papers in all subjects, including math, science and the arts.

Leaphart Engineering Arts Program (LEAP) at Leaphart Elementary School offers a school-wide engineering magnet program. At Leaphart, engineering is not what teachers and students do; it is the method for how teachers and students approach teaching and learning. Engineering concepts are interwoven into all subject areas through the LEAP Design Process. Students are engaged in collaborative, hands-on learning experiences that highlight engineering concepts and ideas.

Seven Oaks Elementary School MEDIA (Mass Communications, Engagement, Digital Media, Interactive Learning, Academics) Magnet fosters a range of content and digital literacies among students through a MEDIA (Mass Communication. Engagement. Digital Media. Interactive Learning. Academics) theme that offers activities, centered in “real-world” project-based and collaborative learning approaches in classrooms and at “work” in the TV/radio studios.

Spring Hill High School Career Pathways Magnet offers five magnet academies: Engineering, Entrepreneurship, Entertainment, Environmental Studies, and Exercise Science. Students will pursue a program of study with rigorous standards-based instruction in all content areas and school-specific course requirements, supported by job shadowing, internship, and summer work experiences. All students will participate in cross-academy projects that will enable them to apply what they are learning.

District Five CHOICE includes the option to select any school in the district that has space available to accommodate additional students or to select a magnet school or magnet program. In addition to magnet programs, District Five “School of Choice” options currently include: the Academy For Success, Irmo Elementary School, Nursery Road Elementary School, Oak Pointe Elementary School, River Springs Elementary School, CrossRoads Intermediate School, Dutch Fork High School and Chapin High School.

Each magnet program will also host upcoming open house events. More information can be found at

Call the Editor
(803) 587-3144

Counter reset on January 30, 2018 with total hits of 966,512 to date

Call Paul Kirby

(803) 587-3144