CAMDEN, SC - On Tuesday, May 11, 2021, SC Governor Henry McMaster issued an executive order stating SC students and families could opt out of the state's guidelines of face mask wearing inside school facilities. The Kershaw County School District (KCSD) will abide by the executive order.
Families who wish to “opt-out” of wearing a face mask must sign a waiver of liability. According to the Governor’s Executive Order, DHEC, in consultation with the Superintendent of Education, will develop and distribute a standardized opt-out form.
The SC Department of Education has said that “due to the lateness of the Order, the legal ambiguities, and the absence of a DHEC opt out form, the state face covering guidelines will remain in effect until such time as the agency has the opportunity to confer with legal counsel and provide further guidance.”
As noted in the Governor’s Executive Order, face covering requirements as they relate to students and staff on school buses have not changed as a result of President’s Executive Order No. 13998 (Executive Order on Promoting COVID-19 Safety in Domestic and International Travel) (Jan. 21, 2021); CDC Order Under Section 361 of the Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C. § 264) and 42 C.F.R. §§ 70.2, 71.31(b), 71.32(b) (Requirement for Persons to Wear Masks While on Conveyances and at Transportation Hubs) (Jan. 29, 2021).
There is little doubt that the COVID-19 Global Pandemic has had long-lasting effects on several members of our community. We are focused and dedicated on ensuring all students and all employees feel safe in our facilities.
With the relaxation of the face mask mandate, it is more important than ever to diligently follow all of the remaining disease transmission protocols such as hand washing, staying home when you are sick, and social distancing when possible. We will continue to disinfect our facilities, check temperatures upon entry, and provide hand sanitizer to students, staff, and visitors. We will also continue to maintain limited outside visitation in our facilities.
Thank you for your time and understanding as we work through this process.
Respectfully, Dr. Shane Robbins, ATC Superintendent