S.C. State House roundup: Senate OKs five-day school for all by April 12

Published: Mar. 31, 2021 at 11:47 PM EDT
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COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The South Carolina Senate has unanimously passed a proposal that would require all schools to provide in-person classes five days a week starting as soon as April 12.

The proposal passed Wednesday would also require schools provide five day a week classes next school year too. The resolution would ban districts from making teachers give instruction both virtually and in person unless there are “extreme and unavoidable circumstances” and the district would then have to pay the teacher more.

Fifty-four of South Carolina’s 79 traditional school districts are back to five days of in-person classes. All but six districts plan to offer them by the April 12 deadline.

Senators want say in who runs election agency

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — South Carolina senators have approved a bill that would end the terms of the five members of the State Election Commission and force the state’s elections director to resign.

The Senate would then get to approve who takes those roles. Senate Majority Leader Shane Massey said the goal is to gain more legislative oversight of the Election Commission.

But some senators pointed out the elections board was explicitly structure decades ago to be independent.

Gov. Henry McMaster’s spokesman says it is more important to pass a House bill making election rules uniform across all counties and called the Senate bill a power grab.

Proposal would bar employers from requiring COVID vaccine

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — South Carolina lawmakers are considering a proposal to prevent employers from mandating COVID-19 vaccines for workers.

The Senate Medical Affairs committee passed Wednesday a resolution that says no one in the state can be forced into getting the vaccine. The proposal also states that employers can’t retaliate against workers who choose to forego the shots.

Some exceptions include hospitals and other places with people especially vulnerable to the virus. Employers could still require quarantines for workers exposed to COVID-19 and provide incentives for employees to get the vaccine.

The proposal now heads to the full Senate for a vote.

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