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The Los Angeles School District announced on Thursday that a new vaccine mandate will be implemented for students, ages 12 and up. News of the decision was first reported by the AP.
With only the Pfizer vaccine having FDA approval for individuals as young as 16, the Los Angeles board of education will be bypassing pending vaccine approval for younger students.
Los Angeles school district superintendent Megan K. Reilly spoke with the LA Times regarding the decision:
“We’ve always approached safety with a multilayered approach: masks, air filtration and coronavirus screening. But we are seeing without a doubt that the vaccines are one of the clearest pathways to protecting individuals from getting severe sickness as well as for mitigating transmission of the COVID virus. It is one of the best preventive measures that we have at our disposal to create a safe environment at schools.”
According to the report, roughly 225,000 students will be subject to the new mandate. Details from the report estimate that 80,000 students within the district have yet to receive their vaccine.
Students will need to provide proof of a single dose of the vaccine by October 1, with full vaccination status required by the end of the month. Kids without sufficient proof of vaccination will be not be allowed in the classroom and can opt out in favor of remote learning.
LA Unified board member Monica Garcia said the new vote “is not about violating anybody’s rights,” and was overwhelmingly approved based on the city’s concern for students’ safety.
Follow along on Twitter: @AlejandroAveela