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DHEC Consent Form to Opt Out of Face Mask Requirement for Students

Late Wednesday morning all school districts received communication from SC DHEC regarding Governor McMaster’s Executive Order issued recently on face coverings in public schools. In accordance with this Executive Order, DHEC has created a consent form to opt out of the face coverings requirement imposed on students by a school or school district that is now accessible on the DHEC website at https://scdhec.gov/sites/default/files/Library/D-4286.pdf. Parents/guardians who wish to opt their child out of mask wearing in school must complete, sign, and submit the official and unaltered DHEC Opt-Out Form to their school. Children without this signed consent form will be expected to wear a face covering. Click here for this form in Spanish and six other languages.

Also, the State Department of Education has, effective immediately, rescinded the state face covering policy with the exception of the school bus requirement that is required by the federal government. Therefore, at this time and until further notice, face coverings are still required to be worn on school buses. SDE and DHEC continue to urge schools and districts to follow DHEC’s public health guidance as they have throughout the pandemic.

In order to provide for the health and safety of our students and staff, Dorchester School District Two will continue to follow the current face covering policy ADD that is in effect. However, the district will comply with the Governor’s Executive Order, and accept and honor a parent’s right to opt their child out of this policy. At this time, the opt-out policy provision applies only to students. Faculty, staff, visitors and volunteers to district facilities are still required to wear face coverings. This includes individuals attending district sponsored events on or off district property. Please note that all current contact tracing protocols and quarantine requirements related to COVID-19 situations remain in effect to provide a safe learning environment for students and staff.