Pender County Board of Education approves resolution
regarding the use of face coverings for the 2021-22 school year
BURGAW – On Friday, July 23, the Pender County Board of Education unanimously passed the following resolution regarding the use of face coverings for students and staff in the 2021-22 school year. The resolution is as follows:
WHEREAS, the Pender County Board of Education (PCBOE) has the privilege of serving more than 9,300 students and 1,200 staff members;
and WHEREAS, all PCBOE employees, including teachers and other school personnel, are eligible for and were offered vaccines at special clinics for PCBOE employees;
and WHEREAS, COVID-19 infection and mortality rates for children have shown to be lower than COVID-19 infection and mortality rates for adults;
and WHEREAS, analysis has shown that staff-to-student and student-to-student infection is not the primary means of transmission among infected children;
and WHEREAS, on July 20, 2021, the PCBOE issued the following statement regarding masks:
The Pender County Board of Education adheres to the belief that parents should have choice when it comes to the use of masks for our students. However, due to state law, we do not have authority to lift the mask mandate. We encourage our citizens to contact their state elected officials in regard to Senate Bill 173.
WHEREAS, on July 21, 2021, Governor Roy Cooper announced that the existing mask mandate for schools contained in Executive Order 220 would expire on July 30, 2021, and the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services released an updated version of the StrongSchoolsNC Public Health Toolkit (K-12) that removed the requirement that North Carolina schools require face coverings or masks indoors;
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the Pender County Board of Education will not require face coverings or masks for students or staff beginning July 30, 2021. All student, staff, and community members are encouraged to make their own decisions regarding their personal health in to choosing whether to wear a mask. Harassment, discrimination, bullying or intimidation based on any person’s decision to wear or not wear a face covering or a mask will not be tolerated.
Resolution approved and authorized by the Pender County Board of Education on the 23rd day of July, 2021