As of the 2019-2020 school year, Rock Hill Schools is the largest school district in York County—geographically and in student enrollment. The district is 180 square miles while York County is 696 square miles. The current enrollment of 17,591 students (PK through grade 12) ranks as the 12th largest school district in South Carolina. The district currently has 27 schools: 17 elementary schools, 5 middle schools, 3 high schools, an early learning 3 and 4 year old center and an Applied Technology Center. The district has three academies, hosts the regional center for Adult Education and maintains several facilities with out-leased academic and academic support programs.
Unique programs include 7 elementary schools of choice, 2 middle schools and 1 high school choice program. Elementary choice schools include a Montessori school, a school of Inquiry, Spanish/French Immersion School, a school of the arts, International Baccalaureate, STEAM and Accelerated Studies. At the middle school level, the district offers an International Baccalaureate choice school, a language immersion school and a STEAM choice school. South Pointe High School offers a STEAM choice program which is available to all high school students in the district. Advanced placement, International Baccalaureate and dual credit are offered at all three high schools. Additional individualized learning centers include the Phoenix Academy, a non- traditional setting for high school-age students who want to earn a high school diploma by catching up on credits or by increasing the number of credits earned.
The Rock Hill School System is recognized state-wide and nationally as a district of innovation. As a member of the League of Innovative Schools and a partner with Modern Teacher, we are transforming instructional practices to engage and empower our students to embody the characteristics of the profile of the South Carolina graduate.
Rock Hill Schools continues to be a growing district with associated changes in our demographics. Major challenges include meeting the needs of an ever more diverse population while managing the financial impact of state shortfalls in revenue:
- 1,063 students are English Speakers of Other Languages (27 different languages)
- 45% of students qualify for free lunch.
- 6% of students qualify for reduced lunch
- 15% of students qualify for special education services
Despite these challenges, we are known for the quality of our personnel and our innovative spirit. Outstanding teachers and support staff are dedicated to meeting the academic, physical, social, and emotional needs of students. Nearly 75 percent of the certified staff has a master's degree or higher, and the district celebrates 148 teachers that have attained National Board Certification. A “can do” attitude strengthens and reinforces the problem-solving ability of our employees. We are proud of the quality of our facilities, athletics, fine arts programs and fiscal management.
Our middle and high schools are members of the South Carolina High School League. The district supports 23 sports and cheer teams with many teams winning region and state titles. South Pointe High School has won the state championship for AAAA football in 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017. Rock Hill High School dominates in the area of wresting where the school has won several state wrestling championships. Our athletic program has produced student athletes who have won college scholarships, secured positions on college teams, and have gone on to play with professional teams. The high schools have won sportsmanship awards and have garnered respect throughout the state for an excellent athletic program.
The district is proud to have top-rated band, orchestra, and choral programs in each of our high schools. The marching bands, orchestra, chorus and visual arts groups have won regional, state, and national acclaim, as they travel throughout the country and abroad. The band, orchestra and choral students have placed at the state competition and represented the district at the national competitions annually. Rock Hill Schools is renowned as one of the most technologically innovative districts in South Carolina. Our district has been recognized as one of the top ten digital districts in the nation. An early adopter of the 1 student: 1 computer learning concept in the state, the 2019-20 school year will be the district’s 7th year of our digital transformation. With over 21,000 student and staff mobile devices in service we are currently at 1:1 in grades 3-12 and 1:3 in grades K-2. We are among the top three school districts in the state for capability of technology infrastructure, including wireless access points, bandwidth and speed at all campuses. All schools classrooms are equipped with interactive white boards and sound enhancement systems. We also operate a semi-virtual high school academy where students work through a self-paced blended learning module in a flexible learning environment.