If students have to wear a mask everywhere, their teachers have to be vaccinated.
The vaccination mandate is slowly becoming the new norm in the US. Many State and local authorities have already implemented it. Officials cite the observations that vaccines offer utmost protection and prevent severe illness, hospitalization, and death. They also curb community transmission thereby protecting even the vulnerable unvaccinated people.
Delta variant is dangerously contagious and this is the reason for the surge in breakthrough infections.
More and more hospitals across the country are making vaccination a mandate for their staff. This, they believe, will protect vulnerable people like immuno-suppressed persons. They are vulnerable even after receiving the two shots of a vaccine. They also want to make sure that the virus doesn’t spread from healthcare professionals. This vaccination-mandate-movement that is gaining momentum in recent weeks across the country, according to health officials, is justifiable. They even recommend the same to protect the unvaccinated children in schools and other vulnerable adults. The country needs more such movements, they say.
Health Officials Recommend Vaccine Mandate For Teachers
The Department of Veterans Affairs made vaccination a mandate for its staff last week. It is the first Federal agency to issue such an order.
California and New York City followed suit. In these places, vaccination is either a mandate or a requirement. Those unvaccinated are required to undergo mandatory weekly COVID 19 tests. Biden Administration too announced in recent weeks that it will release new vaccine-related guidelines for Federal contractors and other staff. This, according to experts, will create a scenario where more employers are making vaccination mandatory. Such a chain will boost the immunity of the country as a whole. And it will be able to eradicate the pandemic.
These orders go in line with the CDC’s recommendation that students should wear masks in indoor public settings irrespective of their vaccination status, teachers, and other staff planning to do in-person learning. It also suggests that everyone should wear a mask indoors in areas where the rate of transmission is substantial or high. The agency recommends that high-school students should wear a mask in indoor settings in schools, but not outdoors in those areas where the transmission rate is low. This implies that schools are relatively unsafe to organize events like parties.
Even with all these moves, one particular group remains absent from the list, teachers of primary and secondary schools and their staff. This, however, is not a general scenario as there are States and cities where vaccination is mandatory for teachers. New York City and Denver have mask mandates for teachers in place. CDC authorizes schools to make vaccination on their campuses. But it does not recommend such a mandate.
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Studies show that just adults are capable of starting a surge in schools. As children under the age of 12 are still not eligible for vaccination, the only way to protect them is for the adults to get vaccinated at the earliest. Authorities have to make sure that adults don’t become the reason for a surge of infections among children.
A vast majority of teachers are vaccinated. But schools have to make sure that every adult who has to interact with children is vaccinated. There are also people who believe that the status of vaccination should guide the parameters of masking in schools.
The safety of children in schools is of prime importance for the officials. The CDC, instead of just recommending universal masking, should ensure that every adult in schools has received their shots against COVID 19. According to some experts, a universal vaccine mandate is a feasible strategy than universal masking.