Welcome to the Center of Excellence

The mission of Francis Marion University Center of Excellence to Prepare Teachers of Children of Poverty is to increase the achievement of children of poverty by improving the quality of undergraduate teacher preparation, graduate teacher preparation, and the professional development of in-service teachers.

Our goals for promoting the academic success of children in and of poverty in South Carolina and across the nation.

Prepare current and future teachers to educate effectively.

Enhance curriculum, instruction, and assessment in schools.

Serve as the premier resource for educators of children of poverty.


Resources for 25 Best Practices

Access searchable database of Center-recommended resources aligned with each of 25 Best Practices.

Resource Library

The Center houses a lending library of resources relevant to the education of children of poverty, including videos, books, and other print resources. Holdings are continuously expanded to support educators’ needs for current research-based resources.

SC Poverty Index

SC Department of Education publishes the percentage of students in poverty for each school and district.

Center Publications

Access various Center publications available for online viewing or download.

Conferences & Events

Access information regarding upcoming events and conferences in South Carolina.

Grants Information

Access information about available grants available for South Carolina educators.

2019 Summer Institute

The 2019 Summer Institute is scheduled for June 19-20.  The two-day event will feature keynote presentations by Dr. William Parrett, Dr. Kathleen Budge, Dr. John Hodge, and Todd Nesloney and more than 30 breakout sessions.  The Call for Proposals is now available.

Keynote addresses and specialized breakout sessions will focus on classroom strategies and best practices for under-resourced students around this year’s theme: Teaching Children of Poverty; Accepting the Challenge; Leveraging the Opportunity.

It is time to submit proposals for breakout sessions.

Educators learn best from other educators and your successful practices could be featured in breakout sessions.  Do you have a classroom activity that has resulted in excellent outcomes? Are you using innovative ways to motivate your learners? Have you employed a brain-based strategy that energizes your classroom?  Now is the time to share with others!

Proposals are being accepted and the process is simple.

Questions? Call or email the Center 843-661-1828 or coe@fmarion.edu

Proposals must be received before February 28.

Teaching Children of Poverty Scholars (TCOPS)
Student Professional Organization

Teaching Children of Poverty Scholars (TCOPS) was initiated in Fall 2018 on the campus of Francis Marion University. The mission of this new student professional organization is to provide intensive opportunities for pre-service and in-service teachers to engage in activities specifically related to their work with under-resourced learners. Monthly meetings held on campus include opportunities for professional study, networking, and service.

2018-2019 Meeting Schedule

Fall 2018
August 22, September 6, October 11, November 8

Spring 2019
January 24, February 26, March 20, April 18

Upcoming Events, Courses & Workshops


2019 Summer Institute

The Center will be having their 2019 Summer Institute on June 19th and 20th. There are scheduled keynotes from Dr. William Parrett, Dr. Kathleen Budge,

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Other Events

Edcamp Palmetto: Florence

What is Edcamp? Edcamp is a nationally-acclaimed “unconference” model that utilizes an informal and flexible discussion format that allows participants to bring ideas, interests, and questions

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The Center publishes a monthly newsletter that features items of interest specifically to teachers of children of poverty. Distributed electronically, the newsletter is used to feature best practices and to advertise Center events.