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A California School District Mandates Vaccines For Eligible Students

Culver City High School quarterback Zevi Eckhaus participates in the first official football practice in February after an 11-month shutdown due to COVID-19. The Culver City Unified School District is developing a plan for those who do not comply with a vaccination mandate for students.
Culver City High School quarterback Zevi Eckhaus participates in the first official football practice in February after an 11-month shutdown due to COVID-19. The Culver City Unified School District is developing a plan for those who do not comply with a vaccination mandate for students.

A school district in Los Angeles County will require students aged 12 and older to get the COVID-19 vaccine.

Culver City Unified School District is still developing a plan for those who do not comply with the mandate.

Local teachers' unions were in strong support of a vaccine mandate for students, Geoff Maleman, a district spokesman, told NPR.

"They were very concerned, particularly some staff members who are older or have comorbidities that might make them more susceptible to COVID, about going back to school in a room full of kids who weren't vaccinated," Maleman said. "It became a real safety concern for the teachers."

Culver City Unified also plans to require masks and conduct weekly testing, regardless of vaccine status. The district is believed to be the first in the country to mandate the vaccine for eligible students and staff. Students and staff must provide proof of immunization by Nov. 19.

California was the first state to mandate that teachers and staff get vaccinated or undergo weekly COVID-19 testing. Earlier this week, Washington state issued a vaccine mandate for K-12 teachers and staff in the state.

Teachers in many districts are required to get the vaccine, including in Denver, Chicago and Washington, D.C.

As the delta variant rages, students at Culver City Unified headed to school buildings for the start of the school year.

"As we have all learned, we may need to change quickly to adapt to new information," Quoc Tran, the district's superintendent, wrote in a letter to families. "We are excited to have everyone back for a safe school experience."

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