DR. KAPPY STECK
Forest Lake Elementary
Richland School District Two
Columbia, South Carolina
Dr. Kappy Steck has been a magnet school principal for 21 years. Under the leadership of Dr. Kappy Steck, Forest Lake Elementary school strives to promote equity, diversity, and high expectations for academic achievement within the school. The student population reflects that of the district and over the past 11 years, has transitioned from 61% African-American, 33% Caucasian, and 6% Other to the current numbers of 54% African-American, 21.6% Caucasian, and 24.4% Other.
Community initiatives are a top priority at Forest Lake and it’s essential to include stakeholders in preparing the diverse student body for success. Dr. Steck realizes that parents and community stakeholders are some of the strongest partners in the quest to achieve school goals. In order to promote the magnet school programs, Dr. Steck has worked with a variety of community members to organize and facilitate meetings in homes, synagogues, churches, rotary clubs, and neighborhood associations. Dr. Steck personally works to secure and maintain business partners for the school, and many even serve on its Magnet Advisory Council.
Under Dr. Steck’s leadership, Forest Lake Elementary began its magnet journey in 2003. Then in 2006, as a
core member of the NASA Explorer School Leadership Team, Dr. Steck moved the school toward its current whole school magnet program theme. During this time, she continuously looked for ways to increase the participation of neighborhood families.
Dr. Steck feels st ongly that her role as principal is to empower and build capacity within her faculty, to strengthen their leadership abilities and continually support effective instructional practices. She has created a solid magnet school infrastructure of support, balancing the needs of both the whole school magnet and the program within a school, the Elementary Learning Collaborative (eLc) magnet.
Raise the level of performance consistent throughout school districts nationwide and creates a platform from which all magnet schools can flourish. Magnet Schools of America’s national certification process is designed to recognize the hard work of the best magnet schools in the nation and to help them as they grow.