CALIFORNIA- Governor Gavin Newsom announced today he is issuing a statewide mandate requiring all eligible public and private schoolchildren in California to be vaccinated with the COVID-19 vaccine.
The mandate will effect students grades 7 through 12. It will go into effect the semester after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration gives full approval of the vaccine for children ages 12 and older as early as January 2022. Students in kindergarten through 6th grade will added after the vaccine is formally approved for their ages.
Currently, only students 16 or older are eligible to receive the vaccine and children as young as 12 have been able to take the vaccine under an emergency authorization.
Once the mandate is in full effect, students will not be allowed to attend classes on campus without being fully vaccinated, on par with other childhood vaccination requirements. However, medical and religious exemptions would still be available.
Per Newsom’s mandate, unvaccinated students will be given the option of enrolling in online school, independent study programs administered by each school district, or have to be homeschooled.
“This is just another vaccine,” Newsom said while visiting a school in San Francisco this morning.