Dr. Darrell Johnson
Superintendent, Greenwood School District 50
Innovative. Progressive. Passionate.
These three words capture the essence of an educational leader who believes in children. Dr. Darrell Johnson, Superintendent of Greenwood School District 50, is currently in his 12th year as superintendent. Dr. Johnson leads a district of eight elementary schools, three middle schools, two high schools, a technology center, and an adult education center.
Dr. Johnson’s leadership was instrumental in District 50 becoming an active participant in the TransformSC/New Carolina Initiative. District 50 is at the forefront of redesigning classrooms to meet the needs of students through project based learning activities under his direction. In April, District 50’s TransformSC schools collaborated to create a project based learning showcase for students and the community. He is leading the implementation of the Responsive Classroom approach in seven Greenwood elementary and two middle schools and he serves as a key partner in the development of the Responsive Classroom middle school program.
For nearly 30 years now, Dr. Johnson has pursued his passion for making a difference in the lives of children. While obtaining his teaching credentials in the mid-1980s, he worked as a school custodian and substitute teacher. After teaching language arts at the secondary level, Dr. Johnson served as an elementary school principal, then as an assistant superintendent before becoming superintendent of Greenwood School District 50. In 2004, he earned his doctorate in education at South Carolina State University. During this time, he still found time to officiate NCAA Division I college basketball games which he’s done for more than twenty years.
What stands out most about Dr. Johnson is his energy, hard work, and dedication to the children, families, and wider community he serves. He is passionate about creating the conditions for every child to develop the core academic and social-emotional competencies they need for success at school and for what lies beyond. He is also an active, engaged member of his community, volunteering and serving on the local community foundation board.
This year, his district kicks off the Greenwood Promise, a $5 million public-partner venture aimed at providing scholarship money to assist students who have lived in Greenwood County with tuition support to earn an associate’s degree or the final two years of a bachelor’s degree. Dr. Johnson provides insights into school leadership, human development, and what it takes for our children to become fully engaged, productive citizens of the world.