South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster and the state’s school superintendent are in agreement: schools statewide must reopen as soon as possible to five day a week instruction, and they both say it’s safe to do it.
McMaster and South Carolina Education Superintendent Molly Spearman made remarks Thursday morning where they addressed plans to vaccinate teachers and a plan for returning to school.
“South Carolina cannot afford to delay going back to school any longer,” Spearman said.
Spearman said since September 4, a total of 9,359 students and staff at K-12 schools have tested positive, which she said is 2.9 percent of all positive cases in the state. About 646 schools are open five days a week, and even with high rates of community spread, and there’s no real evidence of spread in the classroom.
A Medical University of South Carolina study of public schools in Charleston found only one percent of students tested positive after the return. On Wednesday, CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said schools can return to school safely without teachers getting vaccinated as long as people are wearing masks, social distancing, and following other safety guidelines.
“There is growing evidence….schools are not the superspreaders they were once feared to be,” Spearman said.