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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Tim Miller (R)

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COVID Vaccinations in Schools

Friday, November 5, 2021

COVID Vaccinations in Schools   

Earlier this week, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) approved COVID vaccinations for children ages 5 through 11. The vaccine had previously been approved for everyone 12 and older. As a result, the State of Minnesota has partnered with 20 school districts to administer vaccinations in schools.

With this new development, there has been a lot of discussion regarding whether children will need to be vaccinated for school. I have heard from many families in our district who want to know whether schools will seek parental consent before vaccinating children. As a father and grandfather, this issue is extremely important to me.

Unfortunately, there was a lot of miscommunication and misquotes surrounding this topic. I wanted straightforward answers, so I went to the source. I contacted the Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Education, Heather Mueller. Heather and I have a good working relationship, and she addressed my concerns directly. Here are the exact answers she gave me:

  • “children/students will not be vaccinated without parent consent which means that all children/students require parent consent to be vaccinated.”
  • “parents should be with their child(ren)/student(s) when they are vaccinated and that was why school-based sites were striving to offer a variety of times and days to meet the work demands of families.”
  • “For state-run vaccine clinics, children age 15 and under must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.”
  • “The guidance on vaccines for children/students 12-17 states: ‘If a parent/guardian is not able to go with the child to get their vaccine, ask the provider about their consent process and access to the Emergency Use Authorization fact sheet. This is like the Vaccine Information Statements given before other routine vaccinations. Make sure all your questions are answered.’”

I hope this information is helpful to those of you who have questions and concerns. If you know someone is worried about this issue, I ask that you pass this information along.

Ultimately, I believe these are decisions for families. Parents need to make the medical decisions that are right for them and their family. They should not be required to participate in procedures they do not want, and they should not be persecuted because of the choices they make. Medical freedom is a fundamental issue, and I strongly encourage parents to stand your ground and not be bullied into decisions you do not want to make. I stand with you.

Harvest Season Wraps Up

As this year’s harvest season ends, I want to thank all the farmers and agriculture workers who feed our state and our nation. Too often, we just grab food off the shelves without a second thought. We simply assume everything we need will always be there. The last two years have shown us just how indispensable farmers have always been.

This year wasn’t easy for farmers. The summer drought dragged on for an extended period and affected much of our state. Nevertheless, we persevered and got the job done. I was fortunate enough to help with harvest over the last couple of months. Locally, we have been blessed with a successful harvest. To God be the glory.

Tim Miller