Report: Nearly 500 LA Teachers Fired for Refusing COVID Vaccine

Report: Nearly 500 LA Teachers Fired for Refusing COVID Vaccine Report: Nearly 500 LA Teachers Fired for Refusing COVID Vaccine A Los Angeles Unified School District teacher receives a Moderna vaccination at a mass vaccination at Hollywood Park on March 1, 2021, in Inglewood, Calif. (Patrick T. Fallon/AFP via Getty Images)

By Solange Reyner | Wednesday, 08 December 2021 06:34 PM

Nearly 500 employees who refused to get the COVID-19 vaccine have been fired by the Los Angeles Unified School District, The Associated Press reported.

The 496 employees made up 1% of the district's approximately 73,000 workers.

In a statement, interim Superintendent Megan Reilly called the decision ''extremely difficult.''

''Parting ways with individuals who choose not to be vaccinated is an extremely difficult, but necessary decision to ensure the safety of all in our school communities,'' Reilly said. ''We wish everyone the best in their future endeavors and encourage everyone to get vaccinated.''

Most of those fired had likely been on leave since mid-October, when school district staffers were to have received at least their first vaccine dose, the Los Angeles Daily News reported. Employees were required to receive their second dose by Nov. 15.

The report comes the same day the Los Angeles Times said about 34,000 public school students in LA who qualify for the COVID-19 vaccine have not taken the jab and could be barred from in-person learning because they will not be fully vaccinated in time for the district's Jan. 10 deadline.

The school district is the largest public school district in the nation to require vaccines for students ages 12 and older.

About 85% of students have complied with the orders. The school system has 630,000 students.