All teachers, staff at Detroit's public schools must be vaccinated by February

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Cass Tech High School in Detroit. - STEVE NEAVLING
  • Steve Neavling
  • Cass Tech High School in Detroit.

The Detroit Public Schools Community District is requiring all teachers and staff members to be fully vaccinated by Feb. 18.

The mandate was approved by the DPSCD school board on Thursday.



Employees who receive medical or religious exemptions must take regular COVID-19 tests and wear masks.

About 80% of the district’s employees are vaccinated.



Under the mandate, employees who don’t comply will be fired.

Employees and students have been required to wear masks since the start of the school year.

The district has one ongoing outbreak at Wern International High School, where five students were infected with COVID-19, according to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.

Michigan is bracing for the omicron variant of the virus, which the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has warned is more transmissible than any previous strain. Michigan has identified three cases of the variant so far.

Health officials said vaccines are the most effective way to combat the spread of the virus.

Unlike the public school district, Mayor Mike Duggan is not requiring city workers, including police, firefighters and medics, to get vaccinated.

Detroit has the lowest vaccination rate in the metro area, with only 44% of the eligible population having received at least one dose. That’s compared to 62.1% in Michigan, 68.7% in the rest of Wayne County, 72.3% in Oakland, 72.2% in Washtenaw, and 60.6% in Macomb.

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