School Board Votes Down Mask Mandate

Daniel Prince

Those voting against the mandate strongly encourage the use of masks

At Monday night’s meeting of the Union County Board of School Trustees, Superintendent Joey Haney informed the board that over the most recent 10-day span, there had already been 11 staff cases and 48 student cases of COVID. Many of the students infected were on the football team. In light of that, Board Member Manning Jeter made a motion to require the use of masks by faculty, staff, and students.

The main argument against a mandate is the proviso in the state budget that prohibits mask mandates by school districts, with the implied threat that state funding could be withheld. There are calls by members of the state legislature for an emergency session of the legislature to roll back that proviso, but no such session has been announced yet. Several school board members said they did not wish to go against the governor and legislature in what could become a legal battle.

(audio below story features Jeter's motion and Dr. Wanda All's statement following her vote)

Manning Jeter, Mike Massey, and Dr. Jane Wilkes voted for the mandate, while Dr. Wanda All, Frank M. Hart, Mark Ivey, BJ McMorris, and Doc Lipsey voted against it. Mike Cohen was absent. We’ll have more from the meeting in tomorrow’s newscast.

Manning Jeter and Dr. Wanda All
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