Education Secretary Miguel Cardona on Mandatory Coronavirus Vaccines for Children: ‘Make Sure It Happens’

Sadie Sindland, age 14, is inoculated by Nurse Karen Pagliaro at Hartford Healthcares mass vaccination center at the Connecticut Convention Center in Hartford, Connecticut on May 13, 2021. - Six Children were vaccinated at the site and joined other children in the United States as kids ages 12-15 are now …
JOSEPH PREZIOSO/AFP via Getty Images

Biden Education Secretary Miguel Cardona said Thursday he not only supports mandatory Chinese coronavirus vaccines for eligible schoolchildren, he expects states to “make sure it happens.”

“Not only do I support it, but I’m encouraging states to come up with a plan to make sure it happens,” Cardona told Politico during a multistate tour of schools and child care centers. “I would like governors who hold those decisions to make those decisions now that [vaccines] are FDA-approved.”

Cardona said the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) full approval of shots for some children should facilitate state officials to begin their vaccinations.

Pfizer-BioNTech said last week they will be seeking FDA approval in November for their vaccine to be administered to children between the ages of six months and five years old, Breitbart News reported.

“Now we expect to have safety and immunogenicity data for children between ages of 5 and 11, we expect to have that data by the end of September, and then we would expect to file that with the FDA in early October for a potential EUA,” said Pfizer Chief Financial Officer Frank D’Amelio.

“We would expect to have similar data for children between the ages of 6 months and 5 years old that we would file with the FDA, I’ll call it, in the weeks shortly thereafter the filing of the data for the 5 to the 11 year-olds,” he added.

The FDA approved Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine in late August to be given to those aged 16 and older. The company’s vaccine for children aged 12-15 is operating under emergency use in the United States.

The Associated Press

In this Tuesday, Sept. 21, 2021 file photo, a nurse loads a syringe with the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine in Jackson, Miss. Millions of Americans are now eligible to receive a Pfizer booster shot to help increase their protection against the worst effects of the coronavirus. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)

Cardona told Politico:

Governors should work with their school officials and with their health officials to roll out requirements, especially in areas that are high-spread, and where students might be at risk for going back to remote learning, or hybrid learning, as a result of the spread of COVID-19.

This is about safely reopening schools. And what we know, based on not only on the COVID-19 vaccine, but the other vaccines that are already mandatory for school enrollment, is that they work. Our students have been disrupted enough, and sometimes you have to be crystal clear on what you believe.

“There’s a reason why we’re not talking about measles today,” Cardona told Politico. “It was a required vaccination, and we put it behind us. So, I do believe at this point we need to be moving forward.”

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