Education

6 Virginia Colleges Drop Employee Vaccine Requirements

Six public colleges in Virginia have reversed course on COVID-19 vaccines, dropping immunization requirements for employees after Governor Glenn Youngkin issued an executive order Jan. 15 that rescinded the vaccine mandate for all workers employed by the commonwealth.

The College of William & Mary, James Madison University, the University of Virginia, Virginia Commonwealth University, Virginia State University and Virginia Tech all announced they would no longer require employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19 following the executive order, The Richmond Times-Dispatch reported.

The change comes as Virginia, like much of the nation, has experienced recent highs in COVID-19 cases as the Omicron variant of the coronavirus tears across the country.

The executive order was one of 11 signed by Youngkin on his first day in office. Several waded into culture war issues, including rescinding mask mandates in K-12 schools and banning any teaching of critical race theory in public education, a common cause for conservative politicians who believe the controversial graduate-level legal theory is being taught in K-12 schools.

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