Another California school board has voted to stand up to Gov. Gavin Newsom, unanimously rejecting the state's vaccine mandate for students or staff.
The Calaveras Unified School District Board of Trustees voted 5-0 not to "support, enforce or comply with" the pending COVID-19 vaccine mandate. The district encompasses 10 schools that serve 2,800 students.
The board made the announcement in a statement posted to Facebook. The board also said it was adding mask mandates and testing protocols to its meeting agenda for Nov. 23 for "further discussion and possible board action."
"Tonight, the CUSD Board of Trustees voted 5-0 to not 'support, enforce or comply with' the pending COVID-19 vaccine mandate. This outcome was the same for both agenda items addressing students as well as staff," the statement read.
"Direction was also provided to agendize the topics of Mask Mandates and Testing Protocols for the 11/23 Board Meeting for further discussion and possible board action," the statement concluded.
The action came after the board of trustees released a letter to students and staff on Nov. 4 announcing their intention to reject the governor's mandate. It was signed by Board President Christine Noble and Superintendent of Schools Mark Campbell.
"The board's informal comments regarding the pending state mandates for COVID-19 vaccinations, as expressed by them individually and collectively at the October 19th Board Meeting, indicated that they have concerns and questions about the COVID-19 mandate for staff and students and they do not support the mandate," the letter said.
"The board has heard, and will continue to hear all voices on this topic. They understand there are strong perspectives and opinions on both sides of the issue," the letter continued.
"The board is aware of the potential impacts on the district in terms of possible liability exposure, funding loss, other formal actions that can be taken against the district in response—and they understand the Superintendent's recommendation for mandate compliance based upon these potential consequences—but they feel strong in their individual positions on this topic, as expressed on October 19th and as will be discussed on November 9th, when their vote will determine the position and direction of the district on this matter," the letter concluded.
Other School Boards Vote to Refuse Vaccine Mandate
The Calaveras school board is not alone in its stand against Newsom's vaccine mandate. The Mark Twain Union Elementary School Board (MTUESD) also located in Calaveras County and Happy Valley School Board located in Shasta County have also announced they will defy the mandate.
In a press release, the MTUESD board said they "will not take coveted public education away from the children the District serves or stand in opposition to children and families when a parent exercises their right to protect the health and welfare of their child."
Newsom announced last month that California would have the nation's first COVID-19 vaccine mandate for schoolchildren – about 6.7 million public and private school students in the nation's most populous state. The mandate covers all public and private school students K-12, and COVID-19 vaccinations will be required for them to attend school in person.
The Golden State mandate will be phased in and will likely not take full effect until next July.
But Are the Shots Safe for Kids?
As CBN's Faithwire reported in late October, a Harvard professor of immunology who serves as a voting member of a U.S. Food and Drug Administration advisory committee said it won't be clear whether vaccinating kids against COVID-19 is safe until the shots have been widely administered.
"We're never gonna learn about how safe the vaccine is until we start giving it," said Dr. Eric Rubin. "That's just the way it goes."
Meanwhile, Yale epidemiology professor Dr. Harvey Risch told Fox News last month that he would only recommend vaccination for children who have a chronic illness that makes them more susceptible to severe outcomes from infection. The vast majority of kids have no significant issues with a COVID-19 infection.
And in places that may mandate children to be inoculated, Risch encouraged parents to pull their kids from the school system and instead educate them at home.
"If it were my child, I would homeschool them, honestly," he told host Mark Levin. "I would organize with other parents to take them out of the school and create homeschooling environments. There's no choice. Your child's life is on the line."
"It's not a high risk, vaccination is not a high risk that's gonna kill every child by doing so," Risch added. "However, it's enough of a risk that on the average the benefit is higher for homeschooling than it is for vaccination in school. And that's just the bottom line."
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