Would you send your kids to school if COVID vaccine was required? What poll found

·3 min read

Nearly half of parents said in a new poll that they wouldn’t send their kids for in-person teaching if schools required COVID-19 vaccination.

A Morning Consult poll conducted Sept. 1-5 with a sample of 493 parents of children ages 5 to 18 found that 43% of parents said they wouldn’t let their kids go back to school if COVID vaccinations were required to return.

Meanwhile, 44% said all students should be vaccinated before returning to the classroom, 60% said the same of teachers, and 51% said they’d prefer their own kid be vaccinated before they go back.

The California Department of Public Health issued a public health order in August requiring all school employees to either be fully vaccinated or be tested for COVID-19 once a week.

“To give parents confidence that their children are safe as schools return to full, in-person learning, we are urging all school staff to get vaccinated. Vaccinations are how we will end this pandemic,” Gov. Gavin Newsom said in the order. “As a father, I look forward to the start of the school year and seeing all California kids back in the classroom.”

Los Angeles city school officials are slated to vote Thursday afternoon on a vaccine mandate for eligible students after another Los Angeles County district announced a similar requirement, The Washington Post reported.

In the Morning Consult poll, 38% of parents said schools are reopening too quickly — up 10 percentage points from when they were asked the same question on Aug. 2. Thirty-eight percent of parents also said schools are being reopened at “about the right speed,” and 14% said they are being “reopened too slowly.”

Thirty-nine percent of parents said they want “in-person instruction only” for the fall, 38% said they wanted a hybrid between online and in-person teaching, 16% said they want online classes only, and 6% said they preferred home schooling.

The percentage of parents who said they’re currently comfortable with in-person instruction reached an all-time high. Forty-seven percent said they’re comfortable with their kids going back to in-person learning, compared to 36% who said the same on Aug. 9. Twelve percent said they’d be comfortable in the next month, 8% said in the next 3 months, 10% said in the next 6 months, 6% said in the next 12 months, and 10% said in more than 12 months.

Infections have continued to spike across the country, fueled by vaccine hesitancy and the delta variant, which is the dominant strain in the U.S. COVID-19 cases across the U.S. have risen 16% in the past two weeks, according to The New York Times, and hospitalizations have increased 3% over that same period as of Sept. 9. Deaths have spiked 32% in the past two weeks.

More than 208 million people in the U.S. have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, or 62.7% of the population, as of Sept. 8, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. At least 177 million people — or 53% of the total population— are fully vaccinated.

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