(TheIndependentStar.com) – In the 2021-22 Appropriations Bill, the South Carolina General Assembly passed a law forbidding schools from imposing mask mandates for students if the districts wished to continue to receive state funding. The legislators made the decision on the basis that parents should have the right to make the judgment on whether their children wear face coverings.
As expected, the rule was highly controversial. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and parents of disabled students filed a lawsuit in federal court to stop the ban from going into effect. On September 28, a judge put the brakes on the law’s enforcement.
A federal judge has suspended South Carolina from enforcing a rule that banned school districts from requiring masks for students. https://t.co/Ox4Uc4cTlJ
— Newsmax (@newsmax) September 29, 2021
US District Judge Mary Geiger Lewis sided with the ACLU and parents who said the ban discriminates against students with disabilities who would no longer be able to safely attend in-person classes. The judge said the law fails to accommodate the protection of those children. She went on to say masks must be an option for schools to help with the control of COVID-19 so that all students can attend classes.
Governor Henry McMaster (R) had previously issued an order in May allowing parents to have a choice when it came to masks in schools, and he completely supports the General Assembly’s bill. Spokesman Brian Symmes said the governor is willing to go to the US Supreme Court to defend parents’ right to choose.
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