MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCBD) – Jennifer Thrift, Charleston Pinckney Elementary School teacher-librarian was recognized as the Lowcountry Regional Librarian of the Year.

Thrift received this honor from the South Carolina Association of School Librarians and describes her position as a “true passion.”

Thrift also served as president of the Charleston County Associate of School Librarians, was also named a Library Journal Mover and Shaker in 2019, and served on the Charleston County School District (CCSD) Library Advisory Team.

“Mrs. Thrift creates a positive, nurturing environment where her students feel confident and fearless,” says Principal Tiffany Henderson. “She provides a sense of security, where each child does not feel intimidated about learning. Innovation, technology, and arts integration are key components that she uses to drive student achievement and excitement for learning in her media center.”

CCSD’s Library Media Services Coordinator Christy James says that Thrift is an example of a “true teacher librarian.” Adding that Thrift “takes her instructional role very seriously with both students and staff, and has extensive knowledge of standards, curriculum, literacy, technology, and instructional practices; this is an invaluable combination in a school library.”

Thrift considers the Pinckney library as more than a place to check out books, but also a welcoming community for all.

“This is a true classroom and the only difference between me and a traditional teacher is that I teach all of the students in the school,” said Thrift. “Additionally, I collaborate with my colleagues so that what I am teaching is in tandem with what students are learning in their core subjects.”

Principal Henderson says that the library’s flexible schedule allows Thrift to work with teachers and teaching lessons, and that she often “shares her research and technology expertise during teacher collaboration time while also managing the circulation of library books.”

Thrift is set to compete against three other regional winners for the 2021 title of South Carolina Librarian of the Year, which will be announced in March.

“I am humbled to represent the profession and the Lowcountry,” said Thrift. “It is truly an honor to be recognized by my peers across the state.”