Newsom states COVID vaccine will be mandatory when fully FDA approved

CALIFORNIA — On Monday, Oct. 18, parents and teachers who oppose vaccine mandates for students and teachers participated in a Statewide sit-out.

Parents opposing vaccine mandates pulled their students from school on Monday. Rather than calling their child sick, parents said their child is not going to school because they oppose vaccine mandates.

At 11:00 a.m. on Monday, parents met at the San Luis Obispo County Department of Health to show their support against the vaccine mandates for students.

Getting through this together, Paso Robles

According to Rebekah Koznek, the vice-chair for Moms for Liberty San Luis Obispo County, over 250 people showed up at the health department.

Parents left shoes lined up along the sidewalk in front of the building to represent the students who will be pulled out of school when the mandate starts. The shoes will later be donated to a local charity.

On Oct. 1, California became the first state to announce a COVID vaccination mandate for schools. Governor Newsom announced the COVID vaccine would be added to the list of required vaccinations for middle and high school students once the vaccine receives full approval from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Newsom explained the COVID vaccine would be required for in-person school attendance.

Similar protests took place statewide on Monday. Thousands gathered in protest of the school vaccine mandate at the State Capitol.

Koznek, who has attended many rallies for various causes, said, “I have not seen that much support [before].”

Erin Westmoreland, a parent who participated in the sit out and attended the rally in SLO, said the protests are part of a bigger picture.

She explained the protests are about protecting their freedoms overall. However, Westmoreland said Monday was encouraging for other parents, showing they are not alone in their stance against the mandate.

Westmoreland, who has been attending similar rallies throughout the year, said more supporters show up each time.

Parents have also emailed Koznek saying they also oppose the mandate but could not participate in the sit out for lack of child care alternatives.

According to Koznek, a source told her Atascadero and Paso Robles school districts saw a 30 percent decrease in attendance on Monday.

Paso Robles Press has reached out to both districts and has not received a response.