South Carolina K-12 schools will remain closed for the rest of academic year and students won't return until the Fall.
Governor Henry McMaster said he will issue that order next week that will allow school districts flexibility during their last two weeks. He thanked parents for their continuous patience during the closure and says they are doing all they can to keep their children safe over the risk of infection.
Even though school buildings will not be open, Gov. McMaster said there are plans for flexibility of special needs and summer schools. He encourages school districts to find ways to have graduation ceremonies as he heard about some students' "imaginative and innovative" ceremonies.
"We know that is part of American life and is something very important to families," he said about student's graduation plans. "It is very important so we will find ways that they can be accomplish."
The order will be issued next week. He thanks parents for their continuous patience during the closure and says they are doing all they can to keep children safe.
"We're going to continue to support you with good 'ol common sense policies," SC State of Education Molly Spearman said. "The schools are the backbone of communities, and when they close, all of us hurt."
During the briefing, she announced she has received "heart-wrenching" messages from seniors who are disappointed they won't have a graduation ceremony.
"We're so proud of the hard work, you deserve a graduation ceremony and we want that to happen for you."
District leaders have sent her and the state creative ideas of how to proceed with the ceremonies. Summer school will not "necessarily" be closed but Spearman said they are looking at the possibility to hold it face-to-face, and if not, then they will be prepared with a virtual platform.
She said that right now they need creative minds to come together in future preparations as students will work with districts officials to be able to get personal belongings out of school. She announced a plan for a new task force to handle schools opening in August as children's safety and education is their top propriety.
"It has been a burden, it has been sad... but it is a joy to see how everyone has pulled together and work together for the good of our children."