BC Teachers Federation President Teri Mooring stated there are several reasons why a vaccination mandate for teaching staff is not feasible.
This comes after the Vancouver, Surrey, and Abbotsford school boards decided against the mandate.
Mooring told Vista Radio adopting such a policy for each district would be more trouble than it’s worth.
“There are lots of things to consider including medical privacy issues and enforcement mechanisms and that sort of thing, there just isn’t much in terms of support or resources being provided to districts in order to do this work.”
In addition, Mooring stated the fact two of the province’s largest school boards said no points to a much bigger issue.
“What I think we are seeing from those big districts is the reflection of the lack of supports that are available in order to take on this fairly significant task. Other factors also involve recruitment and retention challenges.”
“The larger districts making the decision not to do it, I think other districts will take a look at it. There are parts of the province that really have low vaccination rates and there is a need for a real focus being put on vaccinations in Interior Health and Northern Health. In Prince George and the Peace Region, vaccination rates aren’t what we would like them to be.
Mooring adds 91% of teachers in the Interior and Northern Health regions are vaccinated, slightly below the provincial mark of 94%.
While vaccination mandates are proving to be successful in other sectors, education stakeholders should be pulling out all the stops to ensure inoculation rates are as high as possible.
“Vaccine mandates in different sectors and now for coaches for example are having the desired effect. In other words, when vaccine mandates are instituted for us to be able to fly or go to restaurants or coach, more people get vaccinated so they work. So I think that districts along with local health authorities need to do everything they can to make sure vaccination rates go up,” added Mooring.
School District 54 has not issued a vaccine mandate for its staff up to this point.