Opposed to possible student vaccine requirements, parents begin circulating letters to school districts

Mia Foster speaks during public comment of the Elk Grove Unified School District
Trustees meeting. | 

With the possibility that California public school students must be vaccinated, Sacramento area parents are circulating a letter of opposition to school districts.

Ms. Mia Foster, who, with her husband, has two students enrolled in the Elk Grove Unified School District, shared the letter. Foster said other parents are sending a similar letter to school districts throughout the region.

At last week's EGUSD Trustees meeting, Foster, who, along with her husband, has been vaccinated for COVID-19, spoke during public comment about her family's experience. Foster said the decision as to whether or not their children receive the COVID-19 vaccine should be the parents, not the government.  

Dear Superintendent Hoffman and EGUSD Board Members,

I am actively researching school districts throughout the state regarding their response to the proposed vaccine mandate. There is a growing list of districts that acknowledge the mandate is harmful to schools, students and staff, and they are beginning to push back. They have either voted to not implement the mandate altogether or have drafted resolutions stating their reason(s) for opposition and have asked the Governor to reconsider his decision. Many have put these documents on their upcoming agendas and will be voting to adopt them this month.

As of today, I am aware of three districts that have voted to not enforce the vaccine mandate for both students and staff. These districts include: Yosemite Community College District, Happy Valley Union Elementary School District and Apple Valley Unified School District. This list is growing, and it is hard to keep track of them.

I have also found seven other districts that have recently adopted resolutions that outline the reasons why their district is opposed and requested that the Governor not require the vaccine for both students and staff. These districts include: Lucerne Valley Unified School District, Western Placer Unified School District, Durham Unified School District, Capistrano Unified School District, Thermalito Union Elementary School District, Palermo Union Elementary School District and Calaveras Unified School District.

Rescue Union School District and Paradise Unified School District will be voting on their resolutions soon. There are more districts drafting resolutions. Apple Valley also adopted a resolution; however, it contains stronger language declaring that their district “will not implement a vaccine requirement if one is imposed by State or local health officers.” Copies of resolutions are attached.

These resolutions were all drafted using various methods. Superintendent Bohannon at Durham Unified indicated that he drafted their resolution with the help of the county information officer, and a copy was sent to all districts within Butte County. Western Placer Unified School District utilized the district’s legal counsel to support Superintendent Callahan in developing their resolution. Others were simply drafted by board members, as was the case of the Capistrano Unified School District.

I am formally requesting that EGUSD use the attached documents as examples and draft its own resolution. I also ask that this be placed as an action item on the December 14th agenda or that a special board meeting be called specifically to address this matter.

By drafting a similar resolution, Elk Grove Unified would be taking a formal stance against the vaccine mandate. This would send a strong message to the Governor, parents, and the surrounding schools in our community. Our lawmakers need to be aware that we stand in solidarity with a growing number of districts who acknowledge that enforcement would be severely detrimental to schools, students, and staff. Approving a resolution would also allow staff and parents to breathe a little easier knowing that EGUSD values and supports individual choice for all families. Finally, this will likely give other districts in our community the courage to also stand up and draft their own resolutions.

Many of these documents may be symbolic in nature, however their significant benefit should not be ignored. While more needs to be done, this is a first step in publicly communicating the district’s opposition and its stance on supporting the personal choice of all parents and staff.

Please let me know if I can be of help in any way and please do not stop fighting to keep our kids in the classroom where they belong.


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