Parents outraged over student vaccine mandate, Thermalito School Board will discuss next meeting

Several parents made their voices and concerns over the student vaccine mandate heard in Thursday's board meeting. So many, the location of the meeting had to be changed so it could hold more people.

Posted: Oct 14, 2021 11:32 PM
Updated: Oct 15, 2021 8:43 AM

THERMALITO, Calif. - Thermalito School District parents are outraged with the vaccine mandate.

Parents are now considering other education options for their children if the vaccine mandate is approved by the school district.

The Thermalito School Board meeting was moved from its original location to Plumas Ave. Elementary as parents piled in, frustrated about the student vaccine mandate.

"Your guy's job. You guys can say no we're not going to do this anymore. We're going to make a choice. We need choice," said a frustrated mother.

"It is your responsibility to protect these children and I want to know where your line is," another woman said. 

"As a school board your one and only responsibility to health if anything at all is only to the health of a child, and even at that, the child's health is still the primary responsibility of the parents or guardians," said Matthew Palmquist. 

Parents brought signs and pamphlets to the board meeting Thursday, all in an effort to have the Thermalito school board reject the state's vaccine mandate.

If the school district does not decide to follow the mandate, there can be legal repercussions.

"As it stands right now legislation allows an exemption. It allows a religious belief exemption, so right now, you would have the opportunity to opt-out of the vaccine mandate," said Cody Walker, Assistant Superintendent.

Students that walk from the outside to on school campus, are met with a sign to ensure all students wear a mask before entering the campus.

Dan Strang is a parent of two in Thermalito, and he understands the mask mandate but doesn't want his children to receive the vaccine.

"I don't agree with it at all, I don't want my kids to be a part of it," he said. "I'm not willing to do that, my son is 12 he's about to be 13, and I will not get the vaccine. I'm looking for an alternative other than the school that he does to."

The board is expected to have a meeting on Oct. 26 at 6 p.m. to discuss the vaccine mandate enforcement in their schools, and could possibly make a decision then.

The California student vaccine mandate will go into effect on Jan. 1 or July 1 pending full FDA approval of the vaccine for children.

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