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Urban Discovery Schools to require COVID vaccine for students 12 and older to attend in person

While a charter school system, Urban Discovery Schools will be the first public schools in San Diego County to require the vaccine for eligible students.

SAN DIEGO COUNTY, Calif. — Urban Discovery Schools which has 600 students K through 12th grade recently made the decision to require COVID vaccines for students, 12 years old and up.  

On Sept. 17, UDS decided to make it mandatory for kids to get the shot. Chief executive officer Shawn Loescher said they’re following in the footsteps of Los Angeles Unified to require all eligible students to be vaccinated against COVID by January.

"Our decision was based upon a similar review of the data. We believe this is in the best interest of our students and keeping our schools open for in-person learning,” said Loescher. 

Loescher said the deadline is before the end of the year. 

The new requirement comes in addition to all staff also getting vaccinated – which was a requirement back in August.  

"The more of us that are vaccinated, better it is for those not vaccinated," said Loescher.

He said there are options for students though.  

"Students can enter a student contract for this year which is equivalent to virtual learning," Loescher said. 

Adding, if students so happen to test positive for COVID, they will quarantine by going into this type of virtual learning.  

"It’s not the ideal situation but we want to make sure we’re doing everything we can to continue with student learning," said Loescher.

He said there will be weekly meetings for parents to attend for the next two weeks that will allow a question and answer forum. Students have to be vaccinated by Nov. 21 and once a student turns 12 they have 30 days for a first dose and eight weeks for their second.  

WATCH RELATED: COVID vaccine approval sought for kids ages 5 to 11


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