The B.C. government announced on Monday that all school staff must disclose their COVID-19 vaccination status.
Vaccinations are not required to work in schools, and school districts have been given the ability to implement a vaccine mandate if needed.
The latest order, quietly posted online, states an employer must request proof of vaccination from each employee and keep a record each person’s status. In turn, an employee must provide the district with vaccine proof upon request, and promptly notify them if that status should change.
“The rapid rise in infection rates in British Columbia and the experience in other places have led me to conclude that additional measures are necessary in order to permit the school and public health systems to plan for and respond to clusters and outbreaks of Omicron in schools,” wrote provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry.
“A lack of information on the part of boards of education … and the medical health officer about the vaccination status of staff members in school settings interferes with the suppression of (COVID-19) and constitutes a health hazard.”
The Delta School District announced last week that unvaccinated staff must produce a negative COVID-19 rapid test before entering a school.
Monday’s order also states an employer must report the vaccination status of its staff on an aggregate, non-individually identifying basis by school as required by the medical health officer.
And if an employee does not disclose their status as requested, the school district “must proceed on the basis” that the person is unvaccinated.