PHOENIX - Starting next week, students and staff at Brophy College Prep will be required to get the vaccine.
The Catholic private school sent out a letter to parents of the school's 1,400 students last night notifying them of the requirement. If some students, staff and teachers don't get vaccinated, they'll be expected to get tested twice weekly.
"I've heard from some of them who've said ‘You know, this protocol you’ve implemented has kind of been the piece that's pushed us over the line and so we're now going to get our kid vaccinated' and we're hoping for that actually," said Bob Ryan, the principal at Brophy.
The goal is to slow down the spread of COVID-19 at the middle school and high school on campus.
Vaccination records would be kept there on file. While some parents oppose the decision, many support the move.
"I am thrilled about it. I think Brophy has done a fantastic job of promoting an environment where boys are interested in community as a whole rather than themselves," said Jenny Gadow, a parent.
"I know there are parents opposed to the vaccine. I've heard from a few of them and again, that's why we offer that alternative for parents who feel that way," Ryan said.
Tests for unvaccinated students and staff would not be administered on campus. They would need to get tested twice a week at a lab or pharmacy and submit the results.
"We teach science. We believe in science. We think the science is pretty strong in favor of the vaccine. We also at this point want to respect each family's decision and their perspectives. We feel like we're giving families options," Ryan said.
The school's deadline to get vaccinated is Sept. 13. The principal says that gives parents time to get students their 1st and 2nd shots within 21 days.
Classes at Brophy begin next week. Masks will be required indoors at the private school until Sept. 13.
After that, face coverings will be optional.
State law now bans mask requirements at public schools.
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