State public health officials announced Friday that children in California would no longer be required to receive the coronavirus vaccine from attending school, lifting one of the pandemic’s remaining significant restrictions in the state with the most residents.
In his initial 2021 announcement, Governor Gavin Newsom stated that the policy would eventually be implemented for all 6.7 million students in California enrolled in public and private schools.
But since then, the crisis initially brought on by a strange virus in late 2019 has largely faded from people’s memories.
Although COVID-19 is still widespread, numerous vaccines have reduced the virus’s symptoms for many people, providing respite to the public health system, which had previously been overburdened.
Nearly all of the pandemic restrictions imposed by Newsom have been withdrawn, and after February 28, when the state’s coronavirus emergency designation formally expires, he won’t be able to set any new ones.
The state’s vaccine requirement for kids, a policy established by the California Department of Public Health and unaffected by the lifting of the emergency declaration, was one of the last remaining questions.
On Friday, the Department of Public Health said it was abandoning its previous course of action.
The CDPH continues to strongly advise COVID-19 immunization for children and staff to keep everyone safer in the classroom, but it is not currently looking into emergency rulemaking to add COVID-19 to the list of immunizations needed for schools.
California has had a significant impact on the nation’s pandemic policies. It was the first state to issue a stay-at-home order for the entire state, and other states quickly followed.
But when it came to the vaccination requirement for public schools, most states did not follow California’s example.
Louisianan officials initially announced a similar directive before being abandoned. Beginning in the autumn, District of Columbia schools will mandate COVID-19 vaccinations.