South Pointe Welcomes Dr. Marty Conner


Zarionna Robinson, Managing Editor

It’s the beginning of the 2018-2019 school year at South Pointe High School and students and staff are slowly adjusting to changes to the school guidelines set in place over the summer by previous and new members of South Pointe’s administration. Along with new school policies, nearly 20 new teachers, as well as a new Assistant Principal and Athletic Director, were added to the staff of South Pointe High School while entering its first year under new management.

South Pointe’s founding principal, Dr. Al Leonard, recently retired at the end of the 2017-2018 school year, and Dr. Marty Conner has filled the newly-vacant position.

Although he has never been involved with South Pointe directly in the past, he is no stranger to Rock Hill or York County. During his eighteen years as an educator, Conner has served in many areas of education. Before moving to the Fort Mill School District where he established a substitute program for at-risk students, Dr. Conner served as an assistant principal at Rawlinson Road Middle School.

In 2009, Dr. Conner was named the first principal of Banks Trail Middle School and later spent two years in Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools, where he was in charge of the Northeast and Central Learning Communities.

Dr. Conner secured his Bachelors of Science degree from Norfolk State University in Sports Medicine, his Master of Arts degree in Education Administration and Human Development from George Washington University, in Washington DC, and also obtained his Education Specialist and Administration from South Carolina State University.

Dr. Conner has also received an abundance of awards and accolades proving himself to be a leader in the field of education.

Despite the multitude of his accomplishments, he says that his greatest has been being husband and father to his loving family. Conner and his wife, Shareé have been married for 14 years and have three sons Brysen Alexander 10, Jackson Christian 9, and Marty Jr., 7.

Dr. Conner plans to be involved with not only the football team that South Pointe is so well known for, but also especially the academics and other extracurricular activities at the school.

“There are things that would help them [students] to grow in areas outside of academics. I think it’s important for us to find out what those things are as the world evolves in finding different ways to learn,” Conner said.

As a former football star, Conner puts those team building skills to use. He believes that having had played sports allows for his personal skills to foster others because he was able to learn what being a cohesive team is like. Conner believes that his past experiences as a coach has strengthened his students to grow as individuals and plans to continue this at South Pointe.

Dr. Conner intends to enhance South Pointe’s foundation by furthering the students’ opportunities, not only while in school but also before they graduate. It is important to him that every student that passes through is either college, career or military ready, which means when they leave it’s not a conversation on if you’re going, but where you’re going.

In addition, Dr. Marty Conner aims to receive more student voice inside the school. He would like to hear more of what students would like to see changing in the school.

Conner has established a student advisory council composed of different groups of students within the school, who would then be able to discuss different situations that are occurring within the school, in what he calls “schoolhouse talks”.

Though Dr. Conner does not plan on retiring for at least another thirteen years, before he goes there are some aspirations he hopes to have fulfilled.

“I want my legacy here to be that I have provided great opportunities for every single student here that will give them a boost and opportunity to maximize their potential in the areas of college and career preparation,” he says when asked about his ambitions and goals for South Pointe.

It has only been a short time that Dr. Conner has been principal at South Pointe and even now he has won over the hearts the students and staff.