A court just ruled that California’s school districts do not have the authority to impose COVID vaccine mandates on its students, the Daily Wire reports.
The ruling was handed down by the 4th District Court of Appeals on Tuesday.
This case comes from California’s San Diego Unified School District. Back in September 2021, the district’s officials put forth what they called a COVID “vaccination roadmap,” which looked a lot like a COVID vaccine mandate for students in the district.
The so-called roadmap stated that students who are 16 years old or older had to get vaccinated against the coronavirus in order to attend classes in person and to engage in various in-person extracurricular activities.
This “roadmap” was promptly challenged in October 2021 by a group called “Let Them Choose,” which, as its name would suggest, is against forcing people to get vaccinated.
Let Them Choose won at the lower court level, which found that the “roadmap” violates state law.
“I think that the state . . . has fully occupied this field, there’s a statewide standard, and a local school district simply doesn’t have the authority to do something inconsistent with the statewide standard,” the lower court wrote.
The school district followed up on this loss by filing an appeal with the 4th District. And, on Tuesday, the 4th District upheld the lower court’s ruling in favor of Let Them Choose.
Upon appeal, the school district argued that the “roadmap” isn’t really a vaccine mandate, but “a choice” – “a choice to either do so or be enrolled in independent study.”
The 4th District, though, didn’t buy this argument. The decision reads, “we doubt that students and their parents perceive a real choice.”
A “great win”
California’s San Diego Unified School District is reported to be considering “its next steps.” In other words, the case might not be over: the district may choose to file another appeal.
Let Them Choose, on the other hand, is celebrating the legal victory as “a great win.” Following the victory, the group’s attorney, Lee Andelin, said, “this is a great win for children and the rule of law and ensures consistency statewide.”