NEW YORK (AP) – Schools in New York City have been temporarily barred from enforcing a vaccine mandate for their teachers and other workers by a federal appeals judge, days before it takes effect.
The activist mandate for the country’s largest school system was due to go into effect Monday. But late Friday, a judge at the Second US Circuit Court of Appeals granted a temporary injunction and referred the case to a three-judge panel on an expedited basis.
Education Department spokesman Daniel Filson said officials are seeking an early resolution by the circuit court next week.
“We are confident that our vaccine mandate will be upheld once all the facts are presented, as is the level of protection for our students and staff,” Filson said in an email.
New York Post informed of That department sent an email to principals on Saturday morning saying they should “continue to prepare for the possibility that the vaccine will be implemented later in the week.”
Mayor Bill de Blasio announced in August that about 148,000 school workers would have received at least the first dose of COVID-19 vaccination by September 27. This policy covers teachers as well as other employees, such as custodians and cafeteria workers.
It is the first no-test-option vaccination mandate for a broad group of city workers in the country’s most populous city. And it mirrors a similar statewide mandate for hospital and nursing home workers that went into effect Monday.
Till Friday, 82% of the teachers, including 88% of the employees of the department, have been vaccinated.
Although most school workers have been vaccinated, unions representing New York City principals and teachers have warned that the 1 million-student school system of more than 10,000 teachers, along with other employees, may still leave the school system.
De Blasio has resisted calls to delay the mandate, insisting the city is ready.
“We’re planning for everyone. We have a lot of options ready,” the Democrat said in a radio interview Friday. “A lot is going to happen between now and Monday, but beyond that, we are prepared, even if we need thousands, we have thousands.”