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Duke Energy Donates Eclipse Glasses to SDOC

posted May 4, 2017, 7:35 AM by Deborah Wickliffe   [ updated May 4, 2017, 7:35 AM ]
South Carolina will experience a full solar eclipse with the main path of darkness traveling in an arc across the center of the state, beginning in Westminster on August 21, 2017.  To facilitate the safe viewing of the eclipse, Duke Energy has generously donated 5,000 pair of eclipse glasses. The first boxes of the glasses were presented this week to Dr. Thorsland at Westminster Elementary by Chris Rimel, South Carolina Communications Manager with Duke Energy.

“We are looking forward to providing rich learning experiences at the schools during this once in a lifetime experience of a full solar eclipse,” said Dr. Michael Thorsland, Superintendent.

Students in Ms. Elaine Rankin’s fifth grade science class were able to go outside and put the glasses on while Mr. Rimel explained the importance of eye protection during the eclipse. He also spoke to the students about the many activities planned at the World of Energy. “Our eclipse display is complete now and is available to the public,” said Mr. Rimel. “We encourage parents and community members to stop by and see it before the actual eclipse in order to better understand this amazing natural occurrence.” He also encouraged families to consider spending August 21 at the World of Energy. The facility will have a large field available for viewing the eclipse.

The height of the eclipse will take place in Walhalla at 2:38pm, during the time elementary schools typically dismiss. In order to take full advantage of this educational opportunity, the district plans to dismiss students 15 minutes later all across the district.

“We know that some parents will want to spend that afternoon with their children,” said Dr. Thorsland. “We will accommodate those requests and count them as educational events. Dismissal time on August 21 will be 15 minutes later than the regularly scheduled time of each school,” he continued. “We want to give teachers full opportunity to guide students in this event as well as to provide for a safe dismissal.”

Addition information about the event can be found on the district website at, under the “Parents” tab.