Welcome to Pleasant Knoll Elementary School!

If there are any specific questions that we can answer about our school, please contact us at 803-835-0090.

Principal's Message

Mr. HowardDear Panther Family, 

As a young assistant principal at RVES, I would drive over to Pleasant Road as Pleasant Knoll was being built, daydreaming about the possibility of becoming principal at the school on the “knoll.” In the fall of 2009, my daydreaming became a reality when I opened up Pleasant Knoll Elementary. I have a special relationship with PKES, it’s more than a school, and it’s more than just rooms and bricks. It’s a place where community thrives and innovation lives. It’s a place where students grow into leaders, problem solvers, and caring citizens. It’s a place where dynamic professionals strive to become teacher leaders and masters of their craft. It’s a place where parents are dedicated, loving, and involved. 

Now that I’ve been literally across the United States over the past four years, I can say with confidence that the Fort Mill School District is the most premier school district in the nation. I’m humbled by the opportunity to have a SECOND chance to lead Pleasant Knoll and the community of learners and leaders I left behind four years ago. Fort Mill’s vision of “Children First…Every Day” rings true as the core belief of my leadership philosophy and it’s my hope you will see the “Children First” vision lived out in my actions beginning in June 2017. 

Below are some highlights off my resume that will give you an idea of the work I’ve been involved in since leaving Fort Mill in June 2013. 

Principal - Vogel Elementary- Evansville, IN 07/2015 - Current 

- Worked collaboratively with North Attendance Zone District Support Team and School Leadership Team to create, implement, and evaluate school improvement plan focused on the Plan-Do-Study-Act process of continuous school improvement. 

- Fostered teacher leadership through the creation of teacher committees responsible for designing school-wide frameworks for balanced math, guided reading best practices, and school-wide discipline practices. 

Accomplishments 

- Successfully mentored and provided effective feedback to certified teachers by completing 85 teacher evaluation observations using EVSC’s teacher rubric and I-Observation evaluation management system. 

- Successfully conducted principal-led and teacher-led professional development sessions on best practices within professional learning communities that included topics on summative assessment, formative assessment, unpacking standards, and using data to drive instructional decisions. 

Principal - Martin Luther King, Jr. Elementary- Yakima, WA 07/2013 - 06/2015 

- Worked collaboratively with district personnel to lead school turnaround effort that included directing a massive staff rebuilding effort, overseeing the execution of a $1.5 million dollar School Improvement Grant, and evaluating all certified staff using the Charlotte Danielson Framework for Teaching. 

- Facilitated school-wide implementation of Common State Standards, Reading Wonders curriculum, Eureka math curriculum, and Washington State English Language Proficiency Standards. 

- Redesigned school-wide frameworks and procedures that led to increased student learning time, a 30% reduction in suspensions, and a significant increase in students earning perfect attendance from the previous year. 

Accomplishments 

- Out of the eight tested areas on the Measurements of Student Progress in 2014, students in grades 3-5 showed growth in six areas from the previous year. 

- Fourth grade achievement on the Measures of Student Progress significantly increased from the previous year in reading (30.2 to 58.8%), math (37.2% to 56.4%) and writing (30.2% to 45.8%). 

- 4th and 5th graders ranked #1 out of 14 schools in the Yakima School District with a student growth percentile score of 62 in the area of math. 

- 4th and 5th graders ranked #3 out of 14 schools in the Yakima School District with a student growth percentile score of 53 in the area of reading. 

- Parent engagement significantly increased with the creation and implementation of the MLK, Jr. Parent Leadership Team, regularly scheduled parent engagement activities, and parent classroom walk-throughs that fostered parent advocacy. 

Finding joy in the journey, 

Travis Howard

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