COVID-19 isn’t like chickenpox. How to get school vaccination mandates right

Almost all children 5 or older (as well as those reluctant adults) should receive their COVID-19 vaccinations, especially now that we’re learning some frightening information about how quickly and easily the Omicron variant spreads. But a judge’s tentative ruling last week scrapping the vaccine mandate imposed by San Diego schools shows that getting there via school district policies is far more complicated than it seems.

The San Diego Unified School District would have required full vaccination only of students 16 and older for now, with exemptions for medical reasons. Meanwhile, Los Angeles Unified has already backed down from its more stringent vaccine mandate for students 12 and older because so many families appeared to be flouting the rule, which was scheduled to take effect after winter break.

In his ruling against San Diego County, Superior Court Judge John S. Meyer made it clear he isn’t happy about parents who resist vaccinating their kids. He called the district’s vaccine mandate “necessary and rational” and made no finding that parents have an inherent individual right to defy rules that protect public health. Rather, his decision was based on legal issues of local versus state authority. Click here to read more: