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FMU Center of Excellence to hold Summer Institute, June 7 and 8

FLORENCE – The Center of Excellence to Prepare Teachers of Children of Poverty at Francis Marion University will hold its summer institute June 7 and 8 featuring Craig King, a third grade teacher at Whittaker Elementary School in Orangeburg; Tammy Pawloski, director of FMU’s Center of Excellence to Prepare Teachers of Children of Poverty and FMU Professor of Education; Pamela S. Salazar, associate professor of practice in the Department of Educational Leadership at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV); and Cindy Strickland, national consultant specializing in differentiation and gifted education. 

The COE Summer Institute is a two-day event designed to provide participants with practical, research-based information focusing on the needs and abilities of children of poverty. The theme of the COE Summer Institute is Important Work: Teaching Children of Poverty.The event will feature four keynote addresses and more than 18 breakout sessions that are aligned with the following standards for teaching children of poverty: 

  • The Classroom Community
  • Curriculum Design, Instructional Strategies & Assessment
  • Family and Community Partnerships
  • Language and Literacy
  • Life in Poverty
  • Strong and Supportive School Leadership
  • Teachers of Children of Poverty as Learners, Leaders, and Advocates

 The event will take place each day from 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. in Chapman Auditorium in McNair Science Building.  

In addition to teaching, King is an adjunct professor with South Carolina State University's Honors Program teaching leadership development. In 2008, he received the Charlie Dickerson Community Service Award, which is given to one teacher in South Carolina for tireless service to the community. King is a 2004 and 2007 graduate of SCSU, where he received a B.A. degree in elementary education and the master's degree in rehabilitation counseling. He is a National Board–certified teacher, holding his certification as an early childhood generalist. 

Pawloski attended school in the impoverished areas of rural Horry and Allendale counties and after earning the baccalaureate degree in early childhood education from the University of South Carolina - Aiken, she returned there to teach kindergarten and primary grades. Pawloski holds a Ph.D. from USC, and prior to joining the faculty of FMU in 2000, she served on the faculties of USC in South Carolina, and Ventura College and Pepperdine University in southern California. Her research interests include family partnerships with education and developmentally appropriate practices in early childhood education.                                                                                                               

Salazar’s areas of expertise include the principalship, instructional leadership, school improvement, supervision of instruction, and curriculum development. Currently, she is the coordinator of the Collaborative Principal Preparation Program, which is a joint venture between the Clark County School District and UNLV. Salazar has served as a building principal, assistant principal, and dean. A former physics, math, and computer science teacher, Salazar has taught both middle school and high school students. She serves as the associate-editor for The Rural Educator, an educational journal that focuses on educational issues in rural schools. She is actively involved in the Nevada Department of Education School Improvement network where she assists with school improvement work with Nevada schools. In addition, she serves on the NCATE Unit Accreditation Board, is the state chair for Northwest Accreditation, and serves on a task force on principal preparation and development for the National Association of Secondary School Principals. 

Strickland has been a teacher for 25 years, working with students from kindergarten to the master's level. She is currently pursuing her doctorate in educational psychology, with an emphasis in gifted education, at the University of Virginia, where she works closely with Carol Ann Tomlinson. Strickland's consulting experience includes work with school districts across the United States and Canada as well as in England, France, and Thailand. In the past six years, Strickland has provided nearly 300 workshops on topics relating to differentiation, the Parallel Curriculum Model, and gifted education.  

Her honors include the University of Virginia's Curry School Scholarship for outstanding academic and professional potential and the National Association for Gifted Children's Outstanding Doctoral Student Award. 

Admission is free to the COE Summer Institute for Partner District Educators and all university and college students. There is a $10 registration fee for the public. To register with the Center of Excellence, call 843-661-1828, or e-mail the Center at Seating is limited and reservations will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis.  

S.C. Department of Social Service credit is awarded for Early Childhood Education sessions. Professional Development Recertification hours will be awarded to all participants.   

The FMU School of Education was awarded a five-year grant that established on campus the Center of Excellence. The grant includes a component that supports staff development and in-service training for teachers in the Pee Dee region. Visit the center’s website at for additional information. 


Last Published: May 25, 2011 10:37 AM
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