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Mayor Bowser Announces COVID-19 Vaccination Requirements for All Adults Regularly in Schools and Child Care Centers and for Student Athletes

Monday, September 20, 2021
Requirements Do Not Include a Test-Out Option

(Washington, DC) – Today, Mayor Muriel Bowser signed a Mayor’s Order requiring that by November 1, 2021 all adults who are regularly in schools and child care centers facilities in the District must be vaccinated against COVID-19. The Order further requires that, beginning November 1, 2021, students aged 12 and older must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 in order to participate in school-based extracurricular athletics.

“We know that vaccinations are the most effective tool to slow the spread of COVID-19 and protect children who are not yet eligible to receive the vaccine,” said Mayor Bowser. “This new mandate requirement, without a test-out option, will add another critical layer to the robust measures we have implemented to reopen our schools and keep our child care centers safe. We also know that sports are a high-risk activity. Requiring athletes to get vaccinated will ensure they not only stay safe, but also stay in the classroom and are able to participate in school-based extracurricular athletics.”

The vaccination requirements apply to all employees, contractors, interns, and volunteers working in person in a:

  • DC public school
  • Public charter school
  • Private school
  • Parochial school
  • Child care facility regulated by the Office of State Superintendent of Education (OSSE)

This requirement applies to, but is not limited to, the following classes of adults:

  • Teachers, student teachers, teaching aides, substitute teachers, and teaching fellows;
  • Before- and after-school teachers, program leaders, and assistants;
  • Guidance counselors;
  • Principals and other school leaders, program coordinators and administrators;
  • Coaches, trainers, athletic directors, referees, meet or game officials, and school-based media specialists filming games and training sessions;
  • Librarians and school library-based personnel;
  • Technology support personnel who work in schools;
  • Social workers;
  • School bus drivers;
  • School security personnel;
  • Aides for children with special needs in schools;
  • Cafeteria, janitorial, and building maintenance staff; and
  • Volunteers who are regularly at schools; but do not include adult students in schools.
  • Student-athletes who will turn 12 between September 16, 2021 and November 1, 2021 must be fully vaccinated before December 13, 2021 to be eligible to practice or compete in school-based extracurricular athletics. DCPS, the Public Charter School Board, and each private and parochial school must establish systems for ensuring compliance with this rule among their student-athletes,

These requirements include exemptions for religious or medical reasons.