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Charleston Co. school district to continue vaccination efforts, taking look at mask policy

Updated: May. 10, 2021 at 9:24 PM EDT
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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - The Charleston County School District is taking another look at their face covering policy and ramping up student vaccinations.

During Monday’s committee of the whole meeting, district leaders gave the school board a COVID-19 update on infection rates and vaccination efforts.

So far, the district has been able to give 652 first doses of the Pfizer vaccine to students 16 and older at 11 schools through their medical partnerships. Officials say they hope to finish the doses this week before launching into second doses.

The Food and Drug Administration has approved the expansion of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine to children as young as 12, and the school district is looking into the possibility of providing the vaccine to their middle school students.

“We would approach that through a concept where we would set up in central locations across the district and have parents be given the opportunity to bring students after school to those sites, in the event that they want to be there,” Chief Operating Officer Jeff Borowy said. “We would also look at the possibility of doing family immunization for those who are eligible as well.”

Borowy said they have submitted tentative dates for the roll-out to the Medical University of South Carolina and are hoping to finalize those dates soon.

District leaders have also taken a second look at their face covering policy after some parents came out to protest mandated masks. During Monday’s meeting, more parents came out to ask the district to make masks optional.

After looking at guidelines from the state health department, district leaders say masks will still be required. However, they are looking at the opportunities where that policy can be relaxed, like outside on a playground during recess.

“Right now, the hope is within the next few days we’ll bounce some ideas off school principals and see if they have any thoughts to provide relaxation, if possible, in those schools,” Borowy said.

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