As high school seniors prepare for the excitement of finally reaching graduation, after an unprecedented high school experience, the class of 2022 at Granada Hills Charter High School(GHCH) faces yet another obstacle. Seniors at GHCH who are not vaccinated against covid-19 have been banned from attending graduation events.
Tuesday morning as GHCH held its required graduation ceremony practice, there were 70 students missing. The Los Angeles Unified School District had recently delayed their Covid-19 vaccination mandate until July 1, 2023, although GHCH has chosen to enforce this mandate.
While hundreds of covid-19 vaccinated students were practicing for graduation Tuesday morning, a group of parents and students rallied outside of the campus to make a stand for the 70 unvaccinated students that have been banned from attending the graduation ceremony.
Although it is not just the graduation ceremony students have been banned from. The unvaccinated students have also been banned from attending prom, senior awards night, and Grad Night at Disneyland.
The graduating 2022 seniors have already missed out on a normal high school experience as they were sent home for online education in the middle of their freshman year due to covid-19. As well as canceled homecomings, to no Friday night football games, to attending school via zoom from their beds, the 2022 seniors have already missed so much of what a normal high school experience entails. Now, as life has mostly returned to normal, and schools have reopened, GHCH students who have chosen to not get vaccinated for covid-19 are excluded from any normalcy that was left.
The school announced last fall that students 12 and older would not be allowed on campus if not fully vaccinated against Covid-19. “Our commitment to safety is ever more important as COVID-19 cases are spiking again, and the prospect of outbreaks and new variants is significant,” a portion of a statement from Granada Hills Charter read.
“There’s no requirement anywhere – state, city, county, district, school district, nothing. There is no requirement for a vaccine to do anything around here.” Jennifer Kennedy, spokesperson for GHC Parents United told ABC7 news. “The community says it’s OK to walk, in fact, it’s safe to walk.”
High school graduation is being ripped out of the hands of 70 seniors, because they have chosen to make medical decisions for themselves.