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WATCH NOW: Board votes 4-3 to keep elementary schools in Plan B
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Board of Education

WATCH NOW: Board votes 4-3 to keep elementary schools in Plan B

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Though the school board disagreed on the timetable of a potential full-time return, it was mostly in agreement on one thing: that elementary schools should remain in Plan B for now.

In a special called meeting Monday night at the Olive Hill Resource Center, the Burke County Board of Education saw its closest vote of the school year, as a 4-3 majority voted to keep Burke County Public Schools’ elementary students in Plan B through at least Oct. 16.

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Edna Weller, Seth Hunt, Wendi Craven and Sam Wilkinson voted in favor of remaining in Plan B through Oct. 16, while board chair Buddy Armour, vice chair R.L. Icard and Don Hemstreet voted against the motion.

The original motion was introduced by Weller and amended by Hunt to reflect more clarity in the language regarding a timetable, as he proposed that the board reconvene on or around Thursday, Oct. 15.

The board reached what Wilkinson described as a “little bit of an impasse” after Armour and Hemstreet argued that Burke County Public Schools should remain in Plan B throughout the first semester to allow the board and administration enough time to assess the effectiveness of Plan B. Icard said he thought the board would be doing the students “a disservice” if they were to vote to remain in Plan B.

Prior to the vote, Miranda Michaels, BCPS nurse director, said 12 total staff and students – six staff and six students – tested positive for COVID-19 last week, up from seven cases last week and eight two weeks ago.

Check back with The News Herald for a more detailed analysis of the meeting.

Johnny Casey is a staff writer and can be reached at jcasey@morganton.com or 828-432-8907. 

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Johnny Casey has been covering education and writing feature stories for The News Herald since Aug. 2019

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