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SC Supreme Court rules ban on mask mandates in schools is constitutional

Published: Sep. 30, 2021 at 10:24 AM EDT|Updated: Sep. 30, 2021 at 3:37 PM EDT
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COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - The South Carolina Supreme Court has ruled that the ban on mask mandates in schools is constitutional. That ban came in the form of a temporary law, known as a proviso, that state lawmakers passed on June 22 with the state budget.

Proviso 1.108 blocked school districts from enacting a face mask mandate on students and faculty members in its facilities.

A federal judge on Tuesday temporarily blocked that ban on mask mandates.

In the state Supreme Court’s ruling, the justices said while the proviso prohibits school districts from using funds appropriated or authorized under the state budget, they “do not reject the possibility that other funds might be used to do so.”

RELATED STORY | Federal judge temporarily blocks ban on mask mandates in SC schools

“We decline to give the School District advisory guidance as to its options and obligations regarding virtual education,” the judgment states, thereby leaving the school districts to determine on their own whether they will impose mask mandates.

Richland School District Two responded to the announcement saying:

“After consulting with legal counsel regarding today’s S.C. Supreme Court ruling and the ruling issued by U.S. District Judge Mary Geiger Lewis, Richland School District Two administration will continue to follow the guidance of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) and the S.C. Department of Education (SDE) by requiring face coverings as outlined in Richland Two Administrative Rule ADD,” said Richland School District Two Superintendent Dr. Baron R. Davis.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.

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