Despite strong public opposition, the Berkeley County school board approved Tuesday a so-called ban on parent coaches.

The amendment to the district's student activity policy instructs principals not to assign volunteer parents of student athletes for "coaching responsibilities at the varsity or junior varsity level within the program in which their son or daughter is participating." The rule allows for exceptions to be made at the discretion of the principal and for full-time employees of the district.

Prior to the 8-0 approval of the final reading, residents took to the lectern. Six people implored the board not to pass the measure and asked the board to allow the "bad apples" to be dealt with by the principal instead of creating a "blanket policy."

"If any of them are a problem, why aren't we dealing with them individually?" said Johnny Cribb, a parent and volunteer coach at Hanahan High.

Sally Wofford brought a petition signed by 512 community members opposing the amendment.

"That's more people than showed up for the last special election for school board," Wofford said.

No one spoke in favor of the rule change.

The only board member to oppose the first reading of the amendment was board member Phillip Obie. He was absent Tuesday.

Also

In other school board news, the board voted 8-0 to spend $57,000 to construct security "storefronts" for Macedonia Middle, Whitesville Elementary, Hanahan High, Sangaree Middle and Sedgefield Middle, and voted 8-0 to issue a $40 million general obligation bond.