Hootie honored for work with SC public schools

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) -- The rock band Hootie and the Blowfish will be honored as the state's first Palmetto Ambassador for Education.

State schools Superintendent Jim Rex will present the award onstage during the band's concert Friday night on Daniel Island.

Rex says the new award recognizes people who make extraordinary contributions to South Carolina's public schools.

In 2003, Hootie and the Blowfish began asking Charleston fans to bring school supplies to their concerts. Since then, the band that got its start in South Carolina has collected enough supplies to fill 40 buses.

Also, Rex says the band's foundation raises money for education projects across the state.

On Saturday, Rex and the band will distribute school supplies to students in downtown Charleston.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)