AIKEN COUNTY, S.C. (WJBF) — The Aiken County School Board will discuss a number of topics including COVID-19 in the district at their regularly scheduled meeting Tuesday evening.
One of the topics includes marching band seating at home football games. Band parents are speaking out against what they say is unfair isolation of band students during football games. A petition started by an anonymous user is circulating on social media and so far has garnered more than 2,000 signatures.
NewsChannel 6 has learned stadiums are at 70% capacity and larger bands take up more space in the stands because they have to socially distance themselves. District leaders said that the decision to relocate band students has nothing to do with money and everything to do with the health crisis.
Meanwhile, COVID-19 quarantines and policies implemented by the school district will also be discussed. Many on the school board say they are in favor of a mask mandate but current law doesn’t allow them to be able to enforce it. “I would be very much in favor of requiring a mask,” board chairman Dr. John Bradley told NewsChannel 6’s Aiken Bureau Chief Shawn Cabbagestalk recently. “Masking and social distancing, we can’t do either one of those effectively given the circumstances,” he added.
The U.S. Department of Education announced a new grant program to provide funding to school districts being penalized for implementing COVID safety measures. “We’re studying it to make determinations about whether or not that would have any impact on what we do,” he shared.
According to agenda notes, the superintendent, King Laurence, will discuss that program.
Also, new COVID-19 data for the district is expected to be released on Tuesday evening, as well.