Teachers Union President Backs Vaccine Mandates For Educators'But Biden Administration Declines To Go That Far

ToplineRandi Weingarten, President of American Federation of Teachers (AFT), stated Sunday that she now supports mandatory vaccines for teachers. The AFT had previously stated they should be voluntary. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona however supported Weingarten's push for vaccinations. However, he declined to state whether the Biden administration supports a mandate.Randi Weingarten is the president of the American Federation of Teachers. She speaks at a news conference held at the Richard R. Green High School of Teaching, September 8, 2020 in New York. ASSOCIATED PRNSThe Key FactsWeingarten stated that the AFT would reconsider its vaccination policy for teachers. This was in response to the rising threat of Covid-19. When asked about vaccine mandates for teachers on CBS Face the Nation, Cardona stated that he feels strongly that teachers should be vaccinated. He also praised the efforts of the Biden administration to promote vaccines among teachers. However, he declined to endorse the policy. Weingarten's call for teachers to be vaccinated was answered by Cardona. He said that her call was helpful and added, "Quite frankly, we recognize as educators across this country that we will get further if we collaborate."Big Number90%. Weingarten stated Sunday that this is the percentage of AFT teachers who have been vaccinated against Covid-19. He noted that teachers are the most vaccinated profession currently.Important QuoteCardona stated Sunday that enough has been done for our students. It is time to do our part in keeping our students and staff safe.Important BackgroundCovid-19 protocols have been a major issue in schools in recent weeks. The Delta variant of the Covid-19 protocol has become widespread across the country. This makes children especially vulnerable, as they are not eligible for vaccination. According to data from the American Academy of Pediatrics, 19% of weekly Covid-19 patients were children between July 22 and 29, with 71 726 cases. Arkansas Gov. Arkansas Gov. Although I can understand why people don't want to wear masks when they are tired, Cardona stated Sunday that students and staff safety must be first. He said that policies that prevent schools from requiring masks will hurt students.ContraCardona did not take a position Sunday on teacher mandates, but other federal officials were more supportive of vaccine mandates. Dr. Anthony Fauci is the director of the National Institute of Allergy & Infectious Diseases. Dr. Francis Collins, the Director of the National Institutes of Health, supported the mandates on Sunday. Collins stated on ABC that he believes we should use every public health tool available when people are in danger.Continue readingMost parents want mask mandates but not vaccinae requirementsIn schools as Delta Variant Spreads, poll finds (Forbes).Director of the NIH: There are some evidence that child hospitalizations are increasing and children are more seriously ill, but the U.S. Lacking Rigorous Data (Forbes)Schools are ignoring state governments and imposing their own mask mandates (Forbes).Live updates and coverage of the Coronavirus