JACKSONVILLE, Fla — Teachers are being prioritized across the state for COVID-19 vaccinations, but the state says there is no official database with numbers on how many educators are vaccinated.
Could there eventually be a requirement for teachers to get vaccinated? Sure.
A requirement or mandate would have to come from the state health department or a school district.
The state health department could require a COVID-19 vaccine for teachers. If they choose not to, then a school district could still require it because they are an employer.
That can't happen just yet.
That’s because vaccines have to have full approval by the FDA to become required and currently all COVID-19 vaccines are under Emergency Use Authorization.
However, we reached out to St. Johns County schools and Duval County schools to see what their plan is.
St. Johns County School District spokesperson Christina Langston says the district will not be requiring vaccines. She says they will be continuing COVID-19 protocols as recommended by the CDC and health department.
Duval County School District spokesperson Sonya Duke-Bolden says they will defer to guidelines by the Florida Department of Health.
We started the conversation online on a Duval Schools Facebook page. One person wrote “It should be optional and people should respect whatever choice the teacher makes for themselves and their family.”
Another said “Let’s think this through. We all are required to get other vaccines. Why not this one?"
It's not a far fetched idea. Students are required to get a list of vaccines for public school like DTaP, IPV, MMR, and Hep B to name a few.
The White House and CDC have not said that vaccines should be required for educators in order to reopen schools safely across the country.