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 State to Require Vaccination Verification or Testing for All School Workers

​Dr. Tomás J. Aragón, California’s public health officer, released a public health order today requiring all school workers, including paid and unpaid adults serving in a school setting, to provide verification of their vaccination status, and if unvaccinated, to undergo weekly COVID-19 testing. The purpose of the order is to minimize the risk that staff will transmit COVID-19 to others while on K-12 school campuses. The order applies to public and private schools and covers all staff and volunteers who are on-site at a school campus.

The new policy for school staff will take effect on Aug. 12, and schools must be in full compliance by Oct. 15. A summary of the order follows.

Vaccination Verification

All schools must verify the vaccine status of all workers. The California Department of Public Health specifies what may be used as proof of vaccination.

Schools must have a plan in place for tracking verified worker vaccination status. Records of vaccination verification must be made available, upon request, to county public health for case investigation.

Workers who are not fully vaccinated, or for whom vaccine status is unknown or documentation is not provided, must be considered unvaccinated.

Testing Requirements

All unvaccinated workers or those not yet fully vaccinated must be tested at least once weekly.

Schools with workers required to undergo workplace diagnostic screening testing should have a plan in place for tracking test results and conducting workplace contact tracing in collaboration with local public health departments.