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Modesto Junior College could see COVID vaccine, testing mandate

The Yosemite Community College District is expected to vote on a COVID vaccine mandate or testing policy on Oct. 20.
Credit: Leigh Prather - stock.adobe.com
Healthcare cure concept with a hand in blue medical gloves holding Coronavirus, Covid 19 virus, vaccine vial

MODESTO, Calif. — Depending on a Board vote, students at Modesto Junior College could be required to get the COVID-19 vaccine or undergo weekly testing to access the campus.

The vote is expected to take place Oct. 20 with the Board of Trustees for the Yosemite Community College District (YCCD). The result would also apply to Columbia College.

The vote stems from a special session on Sept. 20 where the district sought input on a possible COVID-19 vaccine requirement or weekly COVID testing for students, staff and faculty.

YCCD spokesperson Jeanette Fontana shared the results of a more than 6,000 student survey on the topic. She said the survey showed that slightly more than half of those surveyed would like a vaccine requirement for Spring 2021. The survey results were as follows:

  • 51% of students responding to the survey reported that they would like to have a vaccine requirement for Spring 2021
  • 63% of students responding to the survey reported that they preferred a testing requirement
  • 41% of students responding to the survey reported that they may go elsewhere if a vaccine requirement were instituted by YCCD

Fontana said the Board received a recommendation from MJC president Dr. Santanu Bandyopadhyay to pass a vaccine/testing requirement.

"In his comments to the Board he stated that such a requirement would allow for reduced social distancing and increased class sizes, maximizing access to in-person courses and reducing the interruption to instruction experienced when a positive case is reported," Fontana said in an email to ABC10. "With a reduction of positive COVID-19 cases on campus Modesto Junior College could increase operational efficiencies that have been reduced by the dedication of staff time to COVID-19 contact tracing and sanitization procedures."

She added that MJC has plans to incentivize student who share their vaccination status with the college.

 A full draft of the resolution of the resolution is available below.



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