Thousands of student athletes could get kicked off a team for missing LAUSD vaccine deadline

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Crenshaw High School football coach Robert Garrett, seen in this undated photo, tells his players that he understands their COVID-vaccine hesitancy. He was reluctant himself. (Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

Crenshaw High School football coach Robert Garrett, seen in this undated photo, tells his players that he understands their COVID-vaccine hesitancy. He was reluctant himself. (Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

An Oct. 31 COVID-19 vaccine deadline could force thousands of high school athletes and musicians to the sidelines in the Los Angeles Unified School District, officials confirmed on Monday.

About 70% of students participating in sports, band and drill had submitted documentation of at least one vaccine dose as of Monday. Those under 18 will need evidence of two doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine by Oct. 31 and the doses must be three weeks apart. If they are 18, they could receive the one-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

The school system released the 70% figure after The Times obtained more detailed documents, dated Oct. 20, indicating that 60% of affected students had met the requirement.

Using the six-day-old, more detailed documents, The Times reviewed vaccine rates for sport and sports-related activity in every high school, involving 21,295 students. Of these, 8,458 were at immediate risk on Oct. 20 of being cut from activities. In general, it appears that vaccine rates were lower in lower-income communities.

Read the full story on LATimes.com.

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