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D.C. Council Weighs COVID Vaccine Mandate for Eligible Students

The D.C. Council is mulling a citywide coronavirus vaccine mandate for all city students who are eligible for the shot.

The council held a public hearing Wednesday on a bill requiring vaccination for all students in public, charter, independent, private and parochial schools who are old enough, WTTG-TV (Channel 5) reported.

The push for mandatory vaccinations was spearheaded by Heather Schoell, president of the Eastern Senior High School PTO, who sent a letter with the request to Mayor Muriel Bowser and Council Chairman Phil Mendelson.

“It doesn’t make sense students who play sports have to be vaccinated, but students who are inside eating lunch together, students who are in a theater together don’t have to be vaccinated,” Schoell said, WTTG reported. “It should be a blanket so everyone can be protected.”

The bill calls for students to be fully vaccinated by Dec. 15, though the council will likely push back that rapidly approaching deadline, WTTG reported.

Students with accepted medical or religious exemptions would not be forced to get the vaccine.

City health department data shows that only about 45% of children ages 12-17 are fully vaccinated, WTTG reported.

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