Laurens County: 455 new cases in past two weeks

The drop-in to celebrate Gene's retirement from the Clinton YMCA scheduled for Monday, December 21 has been postponed due to the spike in COVID cases. --- Thanks, Patti Nelson/Clinton YMCA

41 new cases, Laurens County (more than 3,100 total, 72 fatalities); 506 new infections Greenville County, 382 new infections Spartanburg County - COVID SUNDAY.




First Lady Peggy McMaster Tests Positive for COVID-19

COLUMBIA – After taking a precautionary, routine test on Thursday afternoon, First Lady Peggy McMaster was notified that she has tested positive for the COVID-19 virus. 

Governor Henry McMaster was also tested and the results were negative.

The First Lady is not experiencing any symptoms at this time.

Following Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control (SCDHEC), guidelines, the First Lady will isolate for the next 10 days and monitor for potential symptoms. Accordingly, Governor McMaster will follow official guidelines for “close contacts,” and will quarantine for the recommended seven days while being tested regularly. The governor will continue working from home until his quarantine period is over.

“I’m happy to say that Peggy is feeling well, isn’t experiencing any symptoms at this time and is in good spirits,” said Gov. Henry McMaster. “This shows us, once again, how contagious this virus truly is and how important it is that we follow the advice and recommendations of our public health officials. We are working closely with SCDHEC to ensure that we follow all of the recommended guidelines and that Peggy’s close contacts are notified.”

The Governor and First Lady tested negative on Monday, Dec. 14 prior to attending a White House Christmas event and on Thursday, Dec. 10 prior to meeting with Vice President Mike Pence.

The First Lady is working with Dr. Brannon Traxler, SCDHEC interim public health director, to determine and notify any individuals with whom she was in close contact in the 48 hours prior to receiving the positive result. Members of the governor’s residence staff and security detail have been notified and are taking necessary precautions.


SC Teacher Supply and Demand: Fewer Departures Overall, but More Early-Career Leavers; 700 Positions Still Vacant at the Beginning of 2020-21


Rock Hill – The Center for Educator Recruitment, Retention, and Advancement (CERRA) has released its 2020-21 South Carolina (SC) Annual Educator Supply and Demand Report. 

Approximately 6,000 teachers from 2019-20 did not return to teach in the same district for the 2020-21 school year. This is a 10% decrease compared to the number of departures reported last year. In the report, “teachers” include classroom-based certified educators as well as other certified educators who provide instructional/support services outside the classroom.

Although the number of departures decreased overall, early-career resignations were more prevalent this year with 42% who had five or fewer years of SC teaching experience and 16% with one year or less. The percentages reported last year were 36% and 13%, respectively. Of the first-year teachers hired for the 2019-20 school year, 36% did not return to a teaching/service position in the same district in 2020-21. This percentage is up from 28% last year.

Districts reported an increase of more than 140 vacant teaching/service positions for 2020-21 compared to last year. As of October/November this year, there were about 700 vacancies in SC public schools. With the growing impact of the pandemic, it was anticipated that districts would have more difficulty filling positions this year.

Results from this year’s Supply and Demand Survey may not fully reflect the effects of COVID-19 on schools and districts. Many teachers may have already signed their contracts for 2020-21 when the impact of the pandemic began to be felt, potentially deterring them from resigning. 

Additionally, districts may have experienced more teacher departures after surveys were submitted. CERRA plans to survey district personnel directors in early 2021 to further assess how the pandemic is affecting their teacher recruitment and retention efforts. 




COVID-19 SC recovery rate: 87.7% SC infection rate 20.3% -- Dec. 14, 2020.


72 Fatalities in Laurens County -- 3,124 additional Americans dead, Dec. 9, 2020; in Greenville County, 27,396 infections -- COVID-19. SC Infections are approaching A Quarter Million -- We will likely get there in 4 days.


Laurens County Treasurer’s and Auditor’s Office are closed because of the virus.


Clinton infections top 850 - 120 infections at Presbyterian College. The Winter Surge Is Here: 2,538 new confirmed cases in South Carolina Dec. 6. Hospitals across the nation are seeing record admissions with COVID-19/Coronavirus - 12,910 hospitalized in SC on Dec. 12.


Laurens County -- 2,759 infections

Clinton -- 855 infections

Laurens -- 972 infections

Neighboring Greenville County -- 27,396 infections.

SC -- 241,686 cases; 4,627 deaths, 12,618 hospitalizations, 2,967,221 tests; 88.7% recovery rate.


4,813 cases recorded in SC Schools --- The Post & Courier newspaper in Charleston reported Nov. 22 that there are/have been 230 COVID-19 cases at Whitten Center in Clinton - one of the highest infection rates in South Carolina - with comments from the SC Department of Disabilities & Special Needs.


Presbyterian College: 109 student cases - 11 employee cases, the last report was DEC 3 -- end of fall classes, Nov. 20; start of spring classes, Jan. 25. Men’s Basketball has suspended team activities - Women will  play Saturday.


SC deaths top 4,600;

9,921 deaths in Georgia;

5,661 deaths in North Carolina;

4,627 deaths in South Carolina - Dec. 6;

(241,686 cases in a state of 3 Million people).



Oct. 3: Commencement;

Oct. 5, 1 student case;

Oct. 6, 9;

Oct. 7, 17;

Oct. 8, 20;

Oct. 9, 27;

Oct. 10, 44;

Oct. 11, 49;

Oct. 12, 56;

Oct. 13, 57; 

Oct. 14, 60;

Oct. 15, 55; 

Oct. 16, 49;

Oct. 17, 35;

Oct. 18, 30; 

Oct. 19, 28;

Oct. 20, 16; 

Oct. 21, 6.


9 Employee cases.

Cumulative Student Cases:

21 -- Sept. 15, 2020.

100 -- Nov. 9, 2020.


District 56: Face to face classes started back Nov. 30 at Clinton High & Middle Schools.

13 infection notifications, letters dated:

Nov. 11 - Clinton High;

Nov. 10 - Clinton High, 2; and Clinton Middle

Nov. 8 - Clinton High

Nov. 2 - Clinton Middle

Oct. 6 - Clinton Middle

Oct. 13 - Clinton Elementary

Oct. 6 - Clinton Elementary

Sept. 29 - Clinton High

Sept. 29 - Clinton Middle

Sept. 21 - Clinton High

Sept. 20 - MS Bailey.


In United States:

15,877,271; 297,721 deaths; 9,243,683 recovered (Dec. 9 - TEXAS 1st and CALIFORNIA 2nd are the states with more than 1 Million infections -- GEORGIA tops A Half Million Infections (in 9 months of the virus).



69,613,607; 1,582,966 deaths; 48,274,904 recovered (Dec. 9,


Number 1 in cases: United States.

Number 2 in cases: India

Number 3 in cases: Brazil

Number 4 in cases: Russia

Number 5 in cases: Argentina

Number 6 in cases: Spain

Number 7 in cases: Colombia

Number 8 in cases: France

Number 9 in cases: Peru

Number 10 in cases: Mexico.



Greenville – The Greenville business community came together recently to discuss the impact of COVID-19 and to fight back against the virus with a joint blood and convalescent plasma drive benefitting The Blood Connection. 

During the event held at Hubbell Lighting’s headquarters, Hubbell Lighting Vice President of Human Resources Garth Warner and the Greenville Chamber of Commerce Board Chair Rich Hagins offered insight on how the pandemic has affected area businesses and what they have done to respond.

This event is the latest in The Blood Connection’s “Turn Positive into a Positive” campaign, which was designed to educate the public on the efficacy of and need for convalescent plasma as a potentially lifesaving treatment for COVID-19. Convalescent plasma, or plasma obtained from the blood of those who have recovered from the virus, contains COVID-fighting antibodies. While not a cure, convalescent plasma transfusions are among the most effective therapies and have been proven to achieve an immune system boost, shortening the span of the illness and decreasing the severity of symptoms, especially those requiring hospitalization or breathing support.

“We know that a healthier community leads to a more robust economic recovery, and this is why today’s event matters so much,” noted Hagins. “Although vaccines are forthcoming, it is important that we engage business leaders and advocates in shaping recovery efforts, building resilient local economies and creating opportunities for everyone in the community to thrive. With that in mind, I urge every area resident, every employee, employer, and business owner to remain vigilant in their efforts to fight the virus and to visit  to learn more about how they can give the precious and lifesaving gift of blood or plasma.”

At this safe and socially distanced event, Hubbell welcomed its own employees and donors from across the city, including Charlie Mayfield, the principal of J.L. Mann High School. 

Mayfield recovered from Coronavirus in early spring and has donated convalescent plasma eight times to date. Each convalescent plasma donation can save up to four lives, so Mayfield calls his ability to pass on COVID-19 antibodies to others his “superpower.”

Warner added, “While COVID has robbed us of the chance to be together physically, we’ve learned that togetherness can be as much a state of mind as a physical state. In this spirit of unity, Hubbell is proud to bring the Greenville business community together to help fight back against COVID, but more important than fighting against something, we are fighting FOR something – for our neighbors, our friends, our livelihoods and for getting back to normal.”

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