We at Taylor County Schools understand that we do not have all of the right answers when it comes to dealing with a pandemic. Nor does anyone else. Some strategies may be effective and some may be unnecessary. We do, however, feel it is our responsibility to do our best to use current school and local Covid data in the development of a plan to try to keep students in school and as safe as possible. With that said, we do appreciate the opportunity recently afforded to us by legislators to be allowed to make decisions locally based on our own data and student needs.
From the beginning of the year until now, we have been told by parents that they want their children to learn in school and face-to-face with their teachers. We have given parents the choice to have their students attend school in-person or virtually. We have also given parents the opportunity to provide statements from medical professionals if their child needs to be exempt from wearing a mask.
Though masks may not be 100% effective, we have been advised by local medical professionals that they do help and will slow the spread of the virus. Therefore, in order to keep students safely learning in-person, we are asking, at this time, that all students and staff members continue to wear masks inside our school buildings. Our team diligently monitors community, school, and district data in order to evaluate and potentially make adjustments to our daily plans and layering strategies.
At our September school board meeting, our board will be considering adjusting our district-wide quarantine guidance in that if your child is masked in the classroom setting, then they will NOT have to quarantine in most instances. The ability to make needed adjustments was granted to us through the recent changes allowed in Senate Bill 1 through this week's special legislative session.
Our decisions are not developed in an attempt to please everyone because that's impossible. Our goal is to keep people safe and students learning AT school. We will continue to work together to develop the best plans possible based on factual numbers and data to keep people healthy and at school.
Charles Higdon Jr.
Superintendent, Taylor County Schools