Return to Headlines

Lake Murray Elementary School named Palmetto’s Finest Award winner

For Immediate Release – March 16, 2023



Lake Murray Elementary School named Palmetto’s Finest Award winner

IRMO Lake Murray Elementary School was recognized by the South Carolina Association of School Administrators (SCASA) on March 15 as the 2023 Palmetto’s Finest award winner in the elementary school division during an announcement on SCETV.


“Winning Palmetto’s Finest is really an amazing award that showcases what we already know about Lake Murray Elementary School, that it is a premiere elementary school in the state of South Carolina,” said Superintendent Dr. Akil E. Ross, Sr.  “We’re so proud of Kelly Reese, her team and the Lake Murray community for their hard work and the way they represent our district so well each and every day.”


Last Fall, Lake Murray Elementary School was one of 19 schools across the state who submitted a 20-page application followed by an onsite examination visit from a review committee. The school, along with 10 other finalists, underwent a second onsite evaluation before being selected as the winner.


“This award recognizes not just the hard work of our staff this year, but it recognizes the hard work of everyone at the school for the last 25 years,” Principal Kelly Reese said. “I can’t think of a better birthday present for the school than to receive this award that recognizes the last 25 years of hard work, dedication, and love from the hundreds of staff members that have come through this school and have helped Lake Murray Elementary earn this award. It is so exciting, but it is also so rewarding and affirming!”


SCASA, the professional organization for school leaders in South Carolina, has more than 5,000 members. From professional development opportunities and research to publications and legislative advocacy, SCASA’s focus is to support school leaders in providing the best possible education for South Carolina’s young people. As a state affiliate of three national associations for school leaders, SCASA also works on the national level.


“The Palmetto’s Finest award winners are models of innovation throughout our state,” said Beth Phibbs, South Carolina Association of School Administrators (SCASA) executive director. “They set the standard of excellence by creating an outstanding school culture which includes setting high expectations and providing opportunities for personalized learning.”