During its work session/business meeting on Tuesday, the Warren County Board of Education adopted a resolution granting temporary emergency powers to Superintendent of Schools Dr. Mary Young during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The resolution which the board adopted was prepared by the N.C. School Boards Association, a professional organization that represents local boards of education across the state.

The agenda from the March 24 meeting stated that NCSBA Executive Director Ed Dunlap urged all boards of education in North Carolina, after consulting with their board attorney, to adopt the resolution, drafted by the NCSBA’s legal department, or a similar one to give such authority to their superintendents. It added that the resolution was needed in order to allow superintendents to act quickly in light of the COVID-19 pandemic to protect and provide for student and staff safety.

By adopting the resolution, the Warren County Board of Education gave Young the authority to waive board policies if needed to comply with health and government guidelines.

In addition, Young has the authority to take any lawful actions necessary to continue public education by providing for the health and safety of students and employees, and to respond to direction from health and government authorities.

The resolution also granted her the ability to enter contracts without board approval for any dollar amount for needs related to the COVID-19 pandemic, including purchase of materials, equipment and supplies, or services for sanitation, cleaning and technology.

The temporary powers will remain in effect while schools are closed by executive order of Gov. Roy Cooper, currently until May 15.