California will require Covid vaccination for K-12 students attending school in-person after full FDA approval

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  • Newsom’s latest order, the first of its kind nationwide, will go into effect in two phases for individual learning students.
  • The mandate will first take effect for students 12 years of age and older after full approval by the FDA for that entire age group.
  • California will implement the vaccine mandate for students under the age of 12 in a second phase after that age group has full FDA authorization.

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California will require in-person school-going students to get vaccinated for COVID-19, following full approval announced Friday by the Food and Drug Administration, Governor Gavin Newsom.

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Newsom’s latest order, the first of its kind nationwide, will go into effect in two phases for individual learning students. The mandate will first take effect for students 12 years of age and older after full approval by the FDA for that entire age group.

Pfizer’s COVID vaccine is currently only authorized on an emergency use basis for children aged 12 to 15 years. The FDA approved the vaccine in August for children 16 and older.

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Newsom said California would apply for students 12 years of age and older starting January 1, but possibly as late as July 1 depending on FDA authorization.

California will implement the vaccine mandate for students under the age of 12 in a second phase after that age group has full FDA authorization. Pfizer last month submitted preliminary trial data to the FDA on children aged 5 to 11 and said it would request emergency use authorization in the coming weeks.

“Currently, in the state of California we have 63.5% of all our young people aged 12 to 17 given at least one dose,” Newsom said at a news conference. “But we have to do more – 84% of all eligible people got a dose, but for 12 to 17, we’re not where we need to be.”

Newsom previously issued a weekly testing mandate for all non-vaccinated school workers on August 11.

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This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.

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