Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic is not completely behind us. As a result, some employers, states, and government agencies are now mandating vaccines. If you work in certain fields, like teaching, you may be required to get the COVID-19 vaccine whether you originally planned to get it or not.
If you’re a teacher who does not want to get the vaccine, you probably have some questions. One we have heard often recently is “Will opting out of this vaccination affect my teaching license?”
Many rules about this vaccine are still new and there is still some confusion, but we’ll do our best to break down the recent developments and help you figure out whether or not your choice could lead to a need to defend your teaching license.
Covid 19 Vaccine Mandates for Teachers
The state government of Texas is generally against the vaccine being mandated for anyone. However, a recent court ruling shows just how muddied the legal waters are here. The state said that vaccine mandates were not allowed, but a school district decided to require vaccinations for all employees anyway. The state fought this decision, but a recent ruling issued by a Civil District Court upheld the school district’s mandate.
There will likely be more court fights to come, but for now a school district seems to have the power to issue a vaccine mandate for its staff. If you are working in such a district and decide not to get the vaccine, can there be professional repercussions that could imperil your teaching license?
For now, it seems that dismissal is the most likely outcome for a teacher who works in a district that enacts a mandate. However, the terms of your contract may also open you up to further issues with the Texas Education Agency. For example, if your employer treats your dismissal for refusing to vaccinate in the same way it treats a resignation that has no good cause, they could attempt to file a complaint with the TEA. Additionally, if more districts enact mandates, your unvaccinated status could make it difficult to find work.
Defending your Teaching Certificate
While a complaint that could threaten your teaching license seems like an unlikely outcome at this point, you do want to be prepared for anything. Contact BERTOLINO LLP at (512) 476-5757 if you want to discuss your personal situation with our license defense lawyers.