CCSD reopening plan receives mixed reviews from state lawmakers

VIDEO: CCSD reopening plan receives mixed reviews from state lawmakers

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - The Charleston County School District needs one final vote to approve its reopening plan for school year.

On Thursday, Charleston County Legislative Delegation members held a virtual meeting to discuss the plan with school district leaders. The “Safe Restart” proposal includes a Sept. 8 start date, face mask requirements, and an option for in-person learning or virtual learning.

While many agreed that the plan was well thought-out, it was met with some mixed reviews from state lawmakers.

Rep. Wendell Gilliard did not agree with providing an in-person option for students, considering how high COVID-19 numbers are.

"We really have to really freeze this whole thing now because we're going to regret it," Gilliard said.

Sen. Sandy Senn said her child needed to be physically in school and made the argument for why it needs to be an option.

While the idea is to reopen in person while also providing virtual options, district leaders say it will not happen until the COVID virus rate goes down.

"We have to have both plans ready to go regardless. We are holding out some hope we might be able to bring a few students in," CCSD Superintendent Dr. Gerrita Postlewait said. "Our hope is that we can bring a few students into schools where the medical community says the set up is safe, and the teachers themselves are comfortable working with students."

District officials say things can change depending on the state of the pandemic but they want to prepare as best they can.

The Charleston County School board will hold the final vote for the restart plan on Monday.

The district will also be asking teachers and parents for their preference of online or virtual learning.

The full “Safe Restart” proposal can be viewed here.

The Charleston County School District released the following statement:

“Our meeting with the Charleston Legislative Delegation was another important step in the process of finalizing our Safe Restart Plan. We appreciated their poignant feedback and direct questions, and I believe district staff provided thorough answers regarding instruction and safety. We expect the lines of communication to remain open with our legislators, as they will with our teachers, administrators, parents, students, and community members.”

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