State board of health, group to discuss considering COVID-19 vaccine requirement for students

A proposal will be heard Wednesday that could affect students and parents across Washington state

The Washington state Board of Health is considering a proposal to require COVID-19 vaccinations for all K-12 students. 

In October, the board tasked a technical advisory group to examine vaccines for students. They will meet virtually to hear from the group on their findings. 

According to the agenda, the meeting is scheduled for 9 a.m. and the group will present their proposal to the board at about 12:20 p.m., and public comment will also be available. It will be streamed on the Board of Health’s website. 

Action will not be taken during the meeting. 

RELATED: State and local leaders discuss school immunization requirements for COVID-19

FOX 13 News reached out to the board in November:  

"The Board is coordinating with the state Department of Health to begin the process of convening a technical advisory group (TAG) to consider a COVID-19 vaccine against the Board’s criteria and a recommendation made on whether to add it to the state’s list of required immunizations for school entry. The Board anticipates holding a briefing on the progress of organizing a TAG at its January 2022 public meeting."

Secretary of Health Dr. Umair Shah said the Department of Health is having conversations with the governor and the governor’s office about the next steps, but right now the focus is on encouraging families to vaccinate their children.

"We’re hopeful that we can really get kids vaccinated through that route, but again we are having some of these discussions. We’re behind the scenes really thinking about what are all the different strategies that are going to help protect people across the state," said Dr. Shah.

"We want to keep kids healthy and protected, and I just really want to emphasize it’s really normal for parents to have questions and concerns, or need more information to make a decision about having their kid vaccinated," said Assistant Secretary Michele Roberts of DOH.

RELATED: Washington’s new secretary of state mandates vaccines

Get breaking news alerts in the FREE FOX 13 Seattle app. Download for Apple iOS or Android.

Stay connected with FOX 13 News on all platforms:
DOWNLOAD: FOX 13 News and Weather Apps
WATCH: FOX 13 News Live
SUBSCRIBE: FOX 13 on YouTube
DAILY BRIEF: Sign Up For Our Newsletter
FOLLOW: Facebook Twitter Instagram