Most officials and health experts have stressed the importance of students being able to safely return to school in the new academic year, but vaccine hesitancy could impact how districts move forward.
Only a quarter of Americans age 12 to 15 are fully vaccinated against Covid-19, according to data published Tuesday by the CDC, making them the age group with the lowest rate of vaccination.
Here is the share of the population fully vaccinated by age group:
- Age 12-15: 25% fully vaccinated
- Age 16-17: 37% fully vaccinated
- Age 18-25: 42% fully vaccinated
- Age 25-39: 47% fully vaccinated
- Age 40-49: 56% fully vaccinated
- Age 50-64: 66% fully vaccinated
- Age 65-74: 81% fully vaccinated
- Age 75+: 77% fully vaccinated
California's K-12 schools were directed Monday to turn away students from campuses for refusing to wear face coverings in class, but the rules were revised just hours later to give schools more leeway in implementing protocol.
Despite the initial guidance stating, "Schools must exclude students from campus if they are not exempt from wearing a face covering under [California Department of Public Health] guidelines and refuse to wear one provided by the school," a spokesperson for Gov. Gavin Newsom's office, Alex Stack, insists the intent was not to turn away students.
"The way [the guidance] was written didn't accurately reflect the intent, so it was rewritten," Stack told CNN, acknowledging the statement came across as "banning kids." "It's important to get this right so parents and students know what to expect going in to school year."
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said the city's guidance could change as the school year gets closer, but for now families should assume masks will still be worn in schools come September.
"We've been constantly working with the CDC, but we also in this case have been very careful given everything the city has been through ... for now, we're sticking with the idea that, you know, wearing the masks is the smart thing to do in schools," De Blasio said.