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No mandatory wax requirement for Ottawa-Carleton board students

Several administrators said they were frustrated with the province, but also said it was not fair to deny unvaccinated children the right to go to personal classes.

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Trustees at Ottawa’s largest school board have voted against a proposal to require eligible students to be vaccinated against COVID-19.


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The Ottawa-Carleton District School Board has already decided that staff should be fully vaccinated, but curators, who sit as a committee for the entire, recommended Tuesday against extending the mandate to students. A final vote will take place at a board meeting later this month.

Trustee Lyra Evans proposed the idea, saying that requiring students to be vaccinated would reduce the number of COVID-19 cases, help keep schools open and protect students under the age of 12 who are not eligible for the vaccine.

COVID-19 cases are “already running through” Ottawa’s French-language school boards, whose schools opened in late August, Evans said. Trustees have the legal authority to act and a responsibility to protect children, Evans added.


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“If the province does not want to act to protect our vulnerable children, we must.”

While several administrators said they were also frustrated with the province, they also said it was not fair to deny unvaccinated children the right to go to personal classes.

The proposal was to enroll unvaccinated children without medical exemption in virtual school.

Ottawa Public Health discouraged the idea of ​​mandatory vaccinations for students, said shop steward Rob Campbell, who called OPH advice to his “North Star” in making decisions about pandemic safety measures.

A mandatory vaccination policy could also impair public health’s ability to build relationships with families and communities, Campbell said.

Trustees heard that about 90 percent of students ages 12 to 18 in Ottawa had received at least one dose.


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Two curators of students said that some students in that age group may be unvaccinated for various reasons, e.g. Pressure from parents. “Any student who would go behind their parents’ backs could have serious consequences,” said shop steward Charles Chen. He and study manager AmaturRaheem Salam-Alada suggested that unvaccinated students get fast COVID-19 tests instead.

Trustee Christine Boothby said she is not a doctor but follows advice from OPH. If the school board moves unvaccinated students to online learning, they will not take care of their well-being and limit their ability to learn, she said. “These children need to be in school and not be stigmatized.”

Trustee Chris Ellis said OPH had failed to convince the remaining 10 percent of eligible students to be vaccinated, and there were no indications that that would happen.


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“I see no reason to see that they are going to crack the last few people who are vaccinating-hesitant without more of an impulse that this (vaccination mandate) proposal, if adopted, would provide.”

“Why do we punish the 90 percent because 10 percent for some reason do not want to be vaccinated?”

Four people who were against mandatory vaccination for students gave delegations at the meeting.

Parent Steven McRoberts, who has children aged 11 and 13, said he feared possible long-term risks of the vaccine. He said he and his wife may decide to have their children vaccinated later, but he does not want to be pressured to do so now.

Drew Klein told trustees that “we as their parents have the right to decide what is best for them, not you.”

“Can you believe that in the year 2021 in Canada, how much time and energy we must devote to protecting, defending and fighting for our children’s fundamental human rights to defend them against perpetually wrong, fearful, beadwork, anti-science, ignorance of data, hysterical … authorities in Ottawa’s education and public health departments, ”Klein said.



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