During their meeting on June 1, 2021, the Lexington County School District One Board of Trustees approved the promotion of Kristen E. Smalley to assistant principal at Rocky Creek Elementary School. Smalley currently serves as a mathematics coach at Forts Pond Elementary School.
A 14-year-long educator, Smalley began her career in 2007 as an elementary teacher in Gastonia, North Carolina, where she taught various grades for seven years before moving to South Carolina. While in North Carolina, she earned a school-level Teacher of the Year award in 2013–2014.
In 2014, she became a fifth grade teacher at Saluda River Academy for the Arts in Lexington School District Two. During the three years she taught in West Columbia, her students’ state test scores increased by 20%.
Smalley joined Lexington District One in 2017 as a fourth grade teacher at Gilbert Elementary School. While there, her classroom served as an English language arts model classroom, and her outstanding teaching earned her GES’s Teacher of the Year in 2019–2020.
In 2020, she was promoted to the position of instructional mathematics coach. In this role, she collaborated with teachers to plan and implement lesson plans focused on content standards and excellent teaching practices. Using data, she worked with teachers to develop small-group math instruction for students designed to increase their math knowledge and proficiency.
She served on Lexington District One’s Teacher Leadership Council and FPES’s School Improvement Council and Instructional Leadership Committee. She mentors students-teachers and new teachers, and led a fourth-grade English language arts model classroom.
Smalley earned a Bachelor of Arts in early childhood education from University of Mount Union and a Master of Arts in executive leadership from Gardner-Webb University in North Carolina. She holds certifications in early childhood and elementary education, as well as elementary and secondary administration.