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WHS superintendent reviews vaccine mandates

Wasco Union High School District Superintendent Rob Cobb updated the community on the latest vaccine mandates that apply to staff and students.

Cobb said in his November message despite the progress of in-person classes, homecoming and a fall sports season, challenges still lie ahead that he wants to provide clarity on such as the latest vaccine mandates as they apply to staff and students.

Vaccine requirements for staff, effective Oct.15, all "school workers," including all school employees, substitutes, coaches, tutors or others that work in proximity to students must either Document they have received the covid-19 vaccine or produce a negative covid-19 test on a weekly basis.

Cobb added that these are the current vaccine requirements for all staff and school workers and they could change in the future as Gov. Gavin Newsom has indicated that the weekly testing option may expire once students are required to receive the vaccine.

He said currently, about 75% of the staff is vaccinated and the district continues to encourage all staff to consider receiving the vaccine if they can as it is the best way to reduce the risk associated with severe illness or death.

Cobb said as soon as the FDA provides full approval - which is expected in early 2022 - all students in Grades 7-12 will be required to receive the covid-19 vaccine by the following school term.

"For example, if the FDA provides full approval in January 2022 (as expected), the student vaccine would be required for the 2022-2023 school year for all students enrolled in public and private schools for "in-person" learning," Cobb said.

Exceptions to this requirement can be made based on documented medical reasons, firmly-held religious beliefs or personal beliefs.

Students who don't exercise one of the exceptions above may continue to participate in the Independent Study Program with remote / virtual teacher interaction.

"While we understand that these requirements may be supported by some parents and are opposed by others, it is important to understand that school districts are simply following the legal requirements created by law or government order," Cobb added. "The Wasco Union High School District has not initiated any vaccine requirements other than what is required by law in California and has no authority to reject the vaccine requirement imposed by the California Department of Public Health."

Contact Cobb in the District Office at 661-758-8447 if you have any questions or concerns about these state mandates.

Cobb also reported some news about termite removal and Christmas festivities.

The Wasco High School auditorium was tented to exterminate termites. This began over Thanksgiving week and the district is also removing four Eucalyptus trees that were found to have rot and are at risk of splitting/falling down.

The Christmas Parade will be held Saturday, Dec. 11 beginning at 6 p.m. starting at Broadway and 7th Street to Poplar and 7th Street and the lighting of the tree will be in front of the WHS auditorium at 7:15 p.m.

Winter Break will be Dec. 18 to Jan. 3. School resumes on Jan. 4.


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