Central Okanagan Public Schools weighing whether to mandate vaccinations for staff

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The Ministry of Education issued guidelines for school boards across BC on whether they are going to make COVID-19 vaccinations mandatory for staff.

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The Central Okanagan Public School Board is considering what to do next.

“It’s almost gone from an issue of health and safety to an issue of labor relations,” said Moyra Baxter, the board president of Central Okanagan Public Schools.

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“We have a lot to do in camera as we discuss this.”

Central Okanagan Public School administrators are concerned that they may lose some staff members if they make vaccinations mandatory.

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“If we put in a mandate and people don’t get vaccinated, does that mean we’ll actually be less staffed?” Baxter inquired.

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Initial feedback from staff and community members has already reached the school board.

“We have quite a few emails. I would say some are staff members, community members, other school districts members, some from outside the province,” Baxter said.

“Most of them are against one mandate and in fact many, many of them are against simultaneous vaccination.”

The province has refused to implement the school vaccine mandate – it has only encouraged all staff in the province to be vaccinated.

Education Minister Jennifer Whiteside said: “Since the start of the pandemic we have worked together to ensure students are able to safely learn in the classroom, encourage all eligible British Columbians to get vaccinated, and ensure school safety plans are strengthened and supported. Is.”

“With the guidelines now available, trustees can make decisions about vaccination policies that work best for their communities as we work together to continue to support the culture of vaccination in our schools.”

Looking ahead, the Central Okanagan Public Schools Board said it is weighing all its options, and it is too early to say what decisions it will make for its staff.

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