Mrs. Renee Mathews
Mrs. Renee Mathews is an extremely knowledgeable and talented South Carolina charter school leader. She holds Education Specialist and Master’s degrees in K12 Educational Leadership as well as a Master’s degree in Secondary Social Studies. Mrs. Mathews is certified as a school district superintendent and secondary and elementary principal. Her teaching certifications include high school and middle school English Language Arts, middle school reading, and middle and high school social studies. Additionally, Mrs. Mathews taught high school math for five years.
Throughout her career in education, Mrs. Mathews has served as a school district superintendent, chief academic officer, deputy superintendent, and principal in both large, urban and small, rural settings. Previously, Mrs. Mathews was the Founding Principal of East Point Academy, a Chinese Language Immersion charter school in Columbia, South Carolina, which is consistently one of the highest performing charter schools in the state. Thereafter, Mrs. Mathews served as the transformation Principal at Coastal Leadership Academy in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Mrs. Mathews has also served as a consultant to numerous traditional and virtual charter schools. Further, Mrs. Mathews taught struggling readers at the technical college level and served as an adjunct professor of teachers at the graduate level for six years.
Mrs. Brittany Hamilton
Mrs. Brittany Hamilton serves Virtus Academy in the areas of curriculum design and professional development. She has extensive experience in Project Based Learning and has been trained by the Buck Institute for Education, the premier PBL professional learning network. She has a Master of Education degree in Divergent Learning from Columbia College and is currently in progress of completing her second Master of Education degree in Educational Administration and Leadership. Mrs. Hamilton has been a professional certified educator for 14 years serving as a teacher in grades 4 and 6, a K-5 math interventionist, and as a school-wide technology and PBL leader. As an award-winning educator, she has experience leading professional development in curriculum, PBL, and educational technology at the local, state, and national levels. Brittany served as technology coordinator at Spaulding Middle School and modeled her classroom with the PBL design. She also has extensive experience with flipped classrooms (technology-based mini-content lessons at home and applied learning at school), teaching with DBQ’s (document based questions using primary sources for research and inquiry).
Coordinator of Accountability and Student Services
Mrs. Heather Williams recently relocated to Florence with her husband and six children. She holds a bachelor’s degree in early childhood education from Kendall College, a Master of Education degree in Higher Education from Ashford University, and is currently completing her Doctor of Education from Liberty University. She holds certifications in early childhood curriculum, higher education curriculum, and instruction and is a certified school-age care trainer. Ms. Williams has experience as a classroom teacher, after school program coordinator, non-profit director, and parent referral specialist. She is also currently an adjunct instructor for the North Carolina Community College system, focusing on child development, early literacy, curriculum planning, and child guidance.
Mrs. Williams has experience leading professional development in project based learning, curriculum development, classroom management, health, safety and nutrition, natural playscapes, and classroom arrangement. She previously helped create and implement a take-home literacy program for elementary school students. In previous roles, she headed fundraising efforts, collaborated with parent advisory committees, and continues to teach continuing education courses for public school teachers.
Ms. Iris Brown
School Development and Enrollment
Ms. Brown serves Virtus Academy as a marketing and communications manager. She is a graduate of Francis Marion University and also serves as the Assistant General Manager of Springhill Suites of Florence. She holds a Bachelor's degree in photography, specializing in photojournalism. Ms. Brown is the mother of two, one of whom attends Virtus Academy. She is a community service oriented woman who wants to see everyone succeed. She loves helping others and making a difference through service.
Security and Facilities Management
Mr. David Pierce is Virtus Academy's Director of Security and Facility Management. He served for seven years in the U.S. Army where he was promoted to the rank of Sergeant in just two and a half years. He managed a minimum of seven soldiers for his remaining four and a half years which included one combat tour and thirteen months in Korea. He also worked for six months as an operations Manager during his military career. After completing his service to the Army, Mr. Pierce earned his Associates degree in Police Science. He worked for the Virginia Department of Corrections where he was assigned to the segregation unit. Later, Mr. Pierce moved to Florence, SC and worked at Pet Lovers Warehouse until joining Virtus Academy upon the opening in 2018. His dedication, qualifications, experience and professionalism make Mr. Pierce the ideal candidate for this important position.