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The Johnson County School Board met Thursday to approve their reopening plan for the 2021-22 school year. Officials say it is important to note that all guidelines are subject to change if state or federal requirements mandate certain changes. An overview of the Johnson County School’s approved the health and safety guidelines that can be read below.

  1. All school buildings will be open at 7:30 a.m. to students.
  2. We have no plans to issue a mask mandate for school and/or buses for the upcoming school year. Students and staff may wear a mask if they so desire, but it will not be a requirement. We do encourage masks for those WHO ARE NOT VACCINATED.
  3. We continue to encourage staff and students to be vaccinated but WE ARE NOT REQUIRING VACCINATIONS.
  4. Students will have assigned seats on the bus. There will be no changing of buses at any of our schools.
  5. We ask parents to closely monitor the health condition of their children. PLEASE DON’T SEND CHILDREN TO SCHOOL IF THEY HAVE A FEVER OR ARE EXPERIENCING LEGITIMATE HEALTH CONCERNS.
  6. We are not planning on contact tracing, rather dealing specifically with positive cases. Contact tracing will continue through the Health Department. IT IS IMPORTANT TO NOTE THAT IF STUDENTS ARE IN CLOSE CONTACT WITH AN ACTIVE CASE AND HAVE NOT BEEN WEARING MASKS AND/OR HAVE NOT BEEN VACCINATED THEY CAN BE QUARANTINED, Students who test positive will be required to stay at home for a length of time that will be approved by the Health Department. Public Health Officials will contact the families and provide the return back-to-school date for each person.
  7. in class/school club experiences this year
  8. Social distancing of 3 feet is recommended wherever possible.
  9. We will return to eating in the cafeteria as we have done in the past, serving both breakfast and lunch free to all students. However, our food service staff will serve items on line instead of allowing students to reach in and take specific items from the lunch line.
  10. We will allow the students to attend field trips and participate in class/school club experiences this year.
  11. We will not have restrictions on the number of spectators at athletic events this year. Spectators will not be required to wear a mask at athletic events.
  12. We will not require parents/guardians to wear masks when meeting with school officials. However, school officials will wear a mask if parents/guardians request that we do so during a meeting.
  13. We will continue our efforts to sanitize the classrooms, furniture, and buses to keep staff and students safe. We will also continue our efforts to have stuidents maintain safe/healthy hygiene habits such as washing hands, coughing into elbows, not sharing personal items, etc. We are currently installing UV lights in every HVAC unit across the district as an extra health measurement with air filtration.
  14. Standard water fountains will remain closed. Students may bring their own water bottles to school. Students will be able to refill their water bottles at refilling stations.
  15. VIRTUAL LEARNING OPTIONS – Our virtual learning option is our JOCO Online school provided through Pearson. This is a fully accredited online, comprehensive program that requires at least a one semester commitment. Students must be signed up prior to August 24th, 2021. There will not be a virtual option provided by our local teachers as was the case last year.

New cases, active cases, test positivity and hospitalizations have all increased statewide and in the Northeast Region since the beginning of July. That’s information provided by the Johnson County Health Department. Over the seven day period between July 16th and 22nd, Johnson County had a daily case rate of 9.6 cases per 100,000 residents per day, while over the previous 14 day period of July 9th through the 22nd, the daily case rate averaged 1.3 new cases per 100,000 residents per day. The UK variant continues to be the dominant strain identified in Tennessee at the presents, however there has been a significant increase in the identification of the Delta variant. As of July 21st, 29.2 % of Johnson County residents were fully vaccinated for Covid-19. Anyone who is fully vaccinated can resume activities, indoor or outdoor, safely without mask or social distancing. People who are NOT fully vaccinated should continue protective behaviors. Avoid crowds and poorly ventilated spaces, wear face masks indoors and maintain social distancing. Continue washing you hands often with soap and hot water for at least 20 seconds or use hand sanitizer. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands. Cover coughs and sneezes. Clean and disinfect high touch surfaces. The science is clear, if you are fully vaccinated, you are protected from serious illness and hospitalization, and you may start doing the things you stopped doing during the pandemic. Vaccines have proven to be effective against the SARS-CoV-2 variants currently circulating in the country.

Sheriffs Report

7/23/21 – Jesse D Wallace, Shoun Rd, Criminal Trespassing, Public Intoxication

7/25/21 – Alexander C Roark, Crestwood Dr, Driving on Suspended Drivers License

7/25/21 – Jonathan N Kite, Bristol, TN, Violation of Probation

7/25/21 – Howard C Cooper, Cracker Neck Rd, Theft of Property $2500-$10,000

7/26/21 – Jimmy R Eggers, Trivette Rd, Aggravated Assault as Domestic Violence, Violation of Probation

7/26/21 – Jeffrey C Chance, Kingsport, TN, Failure to Appear X2, Violation of Probation

7/27/21 – Nicholas R Fletcher, Stout Branch Rd, Misuse of Registration, Possession of Methamphetamine, Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, No Insurance

7/28/21 – Timothy R Osborne, WW Vaught Ln, Failure to Appear

7/28/21 – Earl C Barnes, Sugar Grove, NC, Capias

7/28/21 – Michael C Rice, Chestnut Dr, Violation of Community Corrections

7/28/21 – Crystal M Kidd, HWY 67W, Assault as Domestic Violence

7/29/21 – Tina R Tilley, Fox Hollow Rd, Violation of Probation

7/29/21 – Austin Mills, D Curd Ln, Capias

7/29/21 – Jessica M Osborne, Crackers Neck Rd, Felony Evading Arrest, Reckless Driving


Sirrena Wiggins is our special person this week. Presented by Elizabethton Federal Savings Bank, our special person salute goes to the Tennessee 4-H Volunteer of the Year. Congratulations Sirrena! For more than 20 years, she has followed her passion, helped others along the way and has been actively involved with 4-H. Recognized as an avid equestrian who enjoys sharing that passion, Sirrena has volunteered with the Johnson County 4-H Program since 2006. Add to that, her other accomplishments: 4’H horse project leader and coach for the meats evaluation and horse judging teams, It has been said of Sirrena that she hold to her beliefs, using projects, contests and activities offered in 4-H and FFA program to help youth find their unique talents. Elizabethton Federal Savings Banks send out their best wishes to Sirrena Wiggins. For your banking needs, see Elizabethton Federal Savings Bank of Mountain City. They off a wide variety of financial products. A member of FDIC and an equal housing lender.

Sirrena Wiggins, Our Special Person of the Week, and family

SEE WHAT “BLUE PEARL” HAS TO OFFER! Blue Pearl, since it’s opening over 2 years ago, has become one of WMCT’s regular advertisers. We appreciate Maureen and thank her for her continued support. Blue Pearl brings to our area a unique store with custom made jewelry, ladies fashions, accessories and a “fragrance bar: with 50 different oils to allow customers to create their own special fragrance. Blue Pearl is located at 2007B South Shady Street in Mountain City. See the photos below:

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