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Los Angeles-area school district mandates vaccines for all eligible students

Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine
Posted at 11:13 AM, Aug 19, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-19 19:02:44-04

A Los Angeles-area school district is requiring that all eligible students. in addition to staff, get vaccinated against COVID-19.

Quoc Tran, the Culver City Unified School District (CCUSD) superintendent, shared the new requirement in a Facebook update on Tuesday, two days before the district opened the 2021-2022 school year.

All students and staff will be required to provide proof of vaccination by Nov. 19. KTLA-TV in Los Angeles reports that officials with the district hope that the November deadline will allow time for the FDA to grant full approval to COVID-19 vaccines.

Kids 12 and up are currently eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine thanks to FDA emergency use authorization.

The Los Angeles Times, KABC and KTLA all report that Culver City's vaccine mandate for students is likely a first of its kind in California and possibly the country.

California has already required all staff members to be vaccinated or face weekly COVID-19 tests. But Tran told the Los Angeles Times that he felt compelled to go further with his mandate.

"We felt that doing the minimum is not quite good enough. We could do more," Tran told The Times. "We are in the context of constantly crowded places in school settings. The vaccine helps in case our children or staff members contract the virus. They have a lesser chance to be severely impacted."

Tran also told the Times that about 1 in 20 parents in his district are opposed to the mandate.

The new mandate from the CCUSD comes as cases of COVID-19 are spiking across the country amid the rise of the more contagious delta variant. The current surge has also seen an increase in pediatric hospitalizations linked to the virus.

Health officials say that the current spike in COVID-19 cases is among those who are unvaccinated. The CDC says that 99.99% of those who have gotten a shot have avoided a severe or deadly case of COVID-19.