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The district board postponed voting on the mandate for six months on Tuesday.

PMG FILE PHOTO - Portland Public Schools headquarters.As expected, the Portland Public Schools board delayed voting on a COVID-19 vaccination mandate for all students at its Tuesday, Nov. 16 meeting.

District staff had previously recommended the delay the vote on the mandate for students 12 and up for six months.

Now students are upset that the board is kicking the can down the road. Several of them testified in support of the mandate at the meeting.

"Students want a vaccine mandate and they want it now," student Alexander Levine said.

"Good evening directors, students are scared about getting COVID in schools," said another student.

The PPS student representative said that the district student council unanimously voted in favor of a vaccine mandate and that the student council also supports allowing religious and medical exemptions.

"The district student council's mission is to elevate students voices. We believe adding methods of safety, like the vaccine mandate will keep kids healthy and the greater Portland metro community safe," Student Representative Jackson Weinberg said.

Some students questioned the six months.

"Six months is an arbitrary number — you really want to wait until May to start talking about this again? You want to delay this through cold and flu season and leave it up for discussion at the end of the school year?" Levine said.

A couple of parents also testified in opposition to the students who testified, grateful that the school board is delaying the vaccine mandate for now.

KOIN 6 News is a news partner of the Portland Tribune.


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