School board plans to keep optional mask policy in buildings | News

BEAUFORT — As the number of COVID-19 continues to decline across the county, state and nation, the county school board will again address the issue of whether to keep masks optional in schools at its meeting on Tuesday. at the school system’s central office on Safrit Drive.

The board is expected to approve Superintendent Dr. Rob Jackson’s recommendation to continue optional masking in schools, which has been in effect at Carteret County public schools since October.

State law requires school boards to vote at least monthly on face covering policies. Dr. Jackson will present system data on COVID-19 cases and quarantines ahead of the vote.

The action will come on the heels of new North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services safety protocols that went into effect in schools Feb. 21, which no longer require contact tracing or exclusion from school after exposure to COVID-19, unless the exposed person has symptoms and tests positive for the disease.

In other actions, the board:

· Consider approving a budget revision of $10.29 million for 2021-2022. The revision includes $279,000 in local operating funds and $10 million in federal funds, much of which is due to the allocation of $4.5 million in federal emergency relief stabilization funds for schools. elementary and secondary schools to help address the impacts of COVID-19 on the school district.

· Consider approving multiple policy revisions.

· Hear updates on school obligations and capital projects.

· Get feedback from Dr. Jackson and board members.

· Recognize Croatan High School junior Kelsey McCormick for appointment to the North Carolina State Superintendent’s Advisory Council.

· Recognize CHS Junior Angelica Steffy for winning the State Wrestling Championship Feb. 5 at the NC High School Athletic Association Women’s Wrestling Invitational in Greensboro.

· Recognize the West Carteret High School Men’s 200-yard Freestyle 3A Relay Team for winning the state championship Feb. 10 at the NCHSAA 3A Swimming/Diving Championships in Fayetteville.

· Recognize Bridges School teacher Jenny Combs for being selected by the NC Association for Middle Level Education as a recipient of the Digital and Teaching Learning Educator to Watch award.

· Receive a presentation from the Carteret County Arts Council regarding the book introduction, flight of wild geese, to the blackboard. The arts council is donating the book to all elementary schools and public libraries in Carteret County. Local lawyer Deborah VanDyken is the author of the book, with illustrations by former teacher and Beaufort resident Jamison Ipock. The story is set in the east of the country, so the council asked Ms VanDyken to read to first and second year students at Harkers Island Elementary School on February 11.

As part of the consent program, counsel:

· Approve a $279,000 contract with Curtis Construction for the White Oak Elementary School roofing project.

· Consider approving a specialist level vocational and technical training course.

· Consider approving an honors level theater arts/music theater course.

· Consider approving personnel issues.

· Consider approving fundraisers.

Contact Cheryl Burke at 252-726-7081, ext. 255; email [email protected]; or follow on Twitter @cherylccnt.

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