Vaccine Mandate protest

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Javier Arredondo, Editor

On October 18th, 2021, parents and students across the state protested governor Gavin Newsom’s passing of a mandate of COVID-19 vaccines in public schools. They protested by not attending school that day, so as to possibly make a statement about what school will look like without this amount of kids who are unvaccinated. The vaccine mandate will go into effect in the 1st school term where the vaccines are fully approved by the FDA; that means the Pfizer, Moderna, J&J 1st shots, booster shots, and 3rd shots have to be fully approved for the mandate to go into effect. Newsom expects the mandate to go into effect on  January 1st, in time for the 2nd semester of California public high schools, and in time for the 3rd trimester of California public middle schools. If not January 1st, then July 1st, in time for the next school year. The mandate will only affect middle and high schools, not elementary schools, as the FDA would have to approve all the shots for children under 12, which may take much longer. Children who do not take the vaccine will have a few different options for schooling. They can move out of state and go to a public school in another state without vaccine mandates, they can pay money to attend private schools, or they can get homeschooled. Vaccine mandates in public schools, California or not, are not new however. As long as vaccines for diseases such as measles, mumps, rubella, whooping cough and many others have been around, they have been mandated in public schools. The COVID-19 vaccine will join that list. 

“Me, even though I am fully vaccinated, I chose to do so. I feel students shouldn’t be forced to get the vaccine if they don’t feel comfortable. It is not a decision the government should make, it is a decision the person in question should make” said Wyatt Herold, a junior who partook in the protest. He also talked about what the message was. “It sent out a message to say that if we are going to be forced, don’t get it. We have to stay home, so I stay home.”

“As long as it’s peaceful, then it’s within their right[to protest],” said Andrew Williams, a junior, who did not partake in the protest that day.