DARLINGTON, S.C. – Two Darlington County School District (DCSD) schools placed in three different categories during a regional robotics competition recently held at Darlington Middle School.
The event marked the first time Darlington Middle hosted the Pee Dee Area Qualifier, as it has traditionally been held at Florence-Darlington Technical College’s Southeastern Institute of Manufacturing and Technology. The qualifier was one of 15 such competitions that will be held across the state leading up to the East and West state championships in February.
The Darlington Middle “Ninja-neers” took first place in the Robot Performance category and second place in the Research Project category. The Darlington County Institute of Technology “Technovators” finished in second place for the Core Values/Teamwork category.
Another DCSD school, Spaulding Middle, also participated in the qualifier. The other schools that competed included Williams Middle, Henry L. Sneed Middle, Delmae Elementary, North Vista Elementary, Trinity-Byrnes Collegiate, Aynor Middle, Alice Drive Middle, Heath Springs Elementary and A.R. Rucker Elementary.
A.R. Rucker Middle of Lancaster County School District and Williams Middle of Florence County School District 1 took first and second place, respectively, for the Champions Award category. Those two schools, along with North Vista Elementary of Florence County School District 1, qualified for the state championship competitions.
The competitions are sponsored by S.C. First Lego League and Robotics Education Inc. (S.C. FLL), which partners with FIRST LEGO League and Junior FIRST LEGO League in South Carolina, according to the S.C. FLL website. The all-volunteer group’s mission is to “stimulate students’ interest and capabilities in STEM fields, thereby increasing the pool of talented and skilled students who pursue careers in these areas.” For more information about S.C. FLL, visit scrobotics.org.