Los Angeles becomes the first major school district to mandate COVID-19 vaccinations for children

by Keri MacDonald

Los Angeles public schools Last month opened with some of the country’s strictest anti-coronavirus measures. Students and staff are required to wear masks indoors and outdoors, participate in weekly virus testing, and comply with social distancing protocols. District employees are also required to get a COVID-19 shot, and now all Los Angeles public school students age 12 or older are required to get the vaccine.

On Thursday, the Los Angeles School Board of Directors voted to pass a student vaccination mandate, with one member of the board of directors Mentionsed: “So I don’t see this as your choice or mine or about my nieces and nephews and grandchildren or your children. I see this as a societal imperative to protect children under 12 who can’t be vaccinated.”

Los Angeles public school students have until the end of the calendar year to get a full vaccination, unless they participate in extracurricular activities that require a full vaccination by October 31. If they do not comply, students will be pushed into an online learning program operated by the district. In 2015, California repealed its religious vaccination exemption and now only recognizes medical exemptions for schoolchildren.

Some parents have expressed anger at the student’s vaccination mandate. Vice Chairman Nick Melvin Tell New York times That more than half of the emails he received when a student vaccine mandate was first proposed were from people who were against the mandate.

During the public comment section at Thursday’s school board meeting, Diana Guillen, a parent of a local student and leader of the District English Learner Advisory Committee, Disclosed Contradicts the mandate: “This decision should be made by the parents, not by you. We know whether or not our children need to be vaccinated. It feels like you are compromising our rights to care for our children,” she said. Polls It shows that many parents are reluctant to vaccinate their children against COVID-19, and the majority of parents oppose school COVID-19 vaccine mandates for students.

In support of Los Angeles State, Melvin She said “Medical and scientific consensus has emerged that the best way to protect everyone in our schools and communities is for all who qualify for the vaccination.”

But there is no “medical and scientific consensus” on the decision to vaccinate healthy children against COVID-19.

Last week, the UK scientific advisory committee warned Against vaccinating children between the ages of 12 and 15 with the COVID-19 shot. The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunization (JCVI) recommended the injection for children with certain underlying conditions, but suggested that the potential risks of the injection for healthy children outweigh the benefits of vaccination for this small group.

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“There are skepticism about the long-term effects of[myocarditis]and that makes the balance between risks and benefits for these children very tight and much more tight-lipped than we would be comfortable making the recommendation,” JCVI member Adam Fenn Tell Reuters.

new medical Prepress Analysis of data on the risk of a cardiac adverse event (CAE) in children who received the COVID-19 vaccine compared to children who were hospitalized with natural infection with the virus. The researchers concluded that the vaccine risks are higher, especially for young boys. So the researchers condition: “For boys aged 12-17 years without medical comorbidities, the probability of receiving a second dose of CAE vaccination is 162.2 and 94.0/million, respectively. This rate exceeds the 120-day expected COVID-19 hospitalization rate. days at both the moderate rate (August 21, 2021 rates) and high hospitalizations from COVID-19.”

Leading clinicians, such as Jay Bhattacharya of Stanford University, say the results of this paper show that from a public health perspective, “personal decision making” about COVID-19 vaccines for children is “better than universal vaccination.”

In the coming weeks, more school districts may follow Los Angeles’s lead in enforcing COVID-19 vaccinations on students. Parents will face some difficult choices, and some may decide to take their children out of their area for homeschooling and other special education options. Last year, public school enrollment He falls At a rate of 3% nationwide, parents have taken their children out of local schools or delayed the entry of young children to school. Homeschooling rate in the United States double In 2020, more than five million students, or more than 11 percent of the total school-age population. There is Signs Families are choosing to opt out of school district education this year at record rates, and they have more Education options Available to them more than ever.

Los Angeles in particular, home to the second largest school district in the United States, had the highest number of public school enrolments in the state. Drop In 2020, down 4.76%. With the imposition of new public schools irritating many parents, along with many other educational alternatives sprout By today, school districts across the country could continue to have low enrollment rates this school year and beyond.


Image Credit: iStock / didesign021

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