In 2003, Okatie Elementary School enthusiastically opened its doors to 423 students. The community embraced the philosophy of a Science & Technology school. At that time, we met with parents, community members, and staff to develop our core values - Respect and Responsibility - and embedded a strong character focus where students strive to earn their WINGS (Wise decision, Inspirational, Noble, Generous and Sharing) and quarterly W.H.O.O.S. Reading. These core values and academics still continue today.
We are now a STEM-Certified, Learning Through Leadership school with an equally developed focus on healthy habits and physical wellness. We are home to the infamous Okie the Owl, who instills pride and honor within our student body. The students are proud to wear the school colors, red, white, and blue, and know that Respect and Responsibility is expected in school, at home, and throughout our community. We inspire our students to make a daily difference with small acts of kindness to help where needed. Each class works to support grade level service projects with a community focus: Cancer Care Bags for the local Chemo Center, Senior Citizen Hearts, Lady Owls Foster Bags for children in needs, Local Animal Shelter Support for Pet Awareness, Toys for Tots, Fill the Shelves at Self-Help, and those we help due to disasters in and out of our state and country. Our Owls are kind, compassionate, and do their personal best at home and school each day.
I am finishing my 19th year at Okatie Elementary and my 40th year in education. I am a local and have been a part of this county and community for over 50 years. I moved to Bluffton from Savannah, GA when I was 5 years old. I have two sons who both went through Beaufort County Schools and I am married to Billy Pinckney whose family has lived here since the 1800s. In my spare time, I volunteer at local animal rescues, spend time with my granddaughter, beach, bike, and work in my yard.
Okatie Elementary is a most “owlsome” school because of the students, parent support, community involvement, and dedicated staff. We love when our owlstanding owls came back to visit! Now, many have returned with their own little ones! Once an Owl, always an Owl!