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Aurora Public Schools Requires COVID-19 Vaccinations for Staff Before 2021-2022 School Year

AURORA, Colo. — The Aurora Public Schools (APS) superintendent said the school district will require all staff to get vaccinated against COVID-19 before the start of the 2021-2022 school year in August.

Superintendent D. Rico Munn explained the reasoning behind the requirement in a letter.

“This action is in accord with our belief that the science around COVID-19 and the vaccines is clear and compelling, is in alignment with the guidance received from federal, state, and local public health authorities and supports our goal of returning to full in-person working and learning as soon as possible — and to the fullest extent possible,” he wrote.

All staff must get the vaccination before the 2021-2022 school year begins in August, the letter reads.

Permitted exemptions — medical and religious — under state and federal law will be allowed for staff once the requirement is in place, Munn said.

Bruce Wilcox, the president of the Aurora Education Association, said he’s already fielding questions from members about the policy.

“We have reached out this morning to our legal folks to say what are their rights and what are their abilities to file for exemptions,” Wilcox said.

Civil rights attorney, Iris Halpern, said employers can mandate vaccinations.

“You’ve always been allowed as an employer to mandate vaccinations. You do have to do an individualized assessment when an employee comes forward and says, ‘Hey, I have an underlying health condition that prevents me from being vaccinated,’ or, ‘I have a sincerely-held religious belief,'” said Halpern.

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