Peninsula College will require students, staff to be vaccinated on campuses starting in fall

Leader news staff
news@ptleader.com
Posted 7/29/21

Peninsula College will require all employees and students coming back to campuses for the fall quarter to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19.

Waivers will be granted for specific exemptions, college …

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Peninsula College will require students, staff to be vaccinated on campuses starting in fall

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Peninsula College will require all employees and students coming back to campuses for the fall quarter to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19.

Waivers will be granted for specific exemptions, college officials said.

The college said the vaccination requirement is needed to keep students and staff safe and healthy. 

Students and staff will not be required to show COVID vaccination cards.

To be considered fully vaccinated, employees and students can self-attest that they received the final dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at least two weeks before the start of fall quarter.

Employees must verify their vaccination or exemption by Tuesday, Sept. 7.

The deadline for students is Monday, Sept. 20.

Students who are taking only online or virtual classes are not required to verify their vaccination status.

The college is currently working on a mechanism to collect vaccination data from all students and employees by the start of the fall quarter. 

Students and staff who claim an exemption will need to wear a face covering and practice social distancing inside Peninsula College buildings. 

“After numerous meetings, conversations, and gathering campus feedback, we made the decision to move to a vaccinated campus this fall,” Peninsula College president Luke Robins said in an announcement Thursday. 

“We are moving forward with the health and safety of our students and staff foremost in our minds,” Robins added.

College officials said the move was made after the recent proclamations made by Gov. Jay Inslee, which included lifting restrictions on colleges that require vaccinations for students and employees. Colleges that require vaccines to not have to continue social distancing and masking requirements for those who are fully vaccinated.

Peninsula College officials said the college has based its actions on recommendations from the Clallam County Health Department throughout the pandemic.

Indoor masking requirements will remain in place until herd immunity is achieved, as determined by Dr. Allison Berry, public health officer for Clallam and Jefferson counties.

Officials said the college will not change fall's on-line classes to in-person classes. Enrollment caps on in-person classes, however, may be lifted now that the college no longer needs to comply with social distancing requirements. 

The college plans to fully re-open for winter quarter in 2022.

The decision to require COVID-19 vaccinations was made by the college's cabinet last week, Kari Desser, Peninsula College communication manager told The Leader in an email Thursday.

The college's cabinet is made up of president Dr. Luke Robins; vice president of student services Jack Huls; vice president of finance and administration Carie Edmiston; vice president of instruction Steven Thomas; and chief strategy officer June Whitaker.

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