The City of Boston has reached an agreement with Boston Teachers Union requiring unvaccinated members to submit proof of two negative COVID-19 screening tests per week during periods of lower virus transmission, Mayor Michelle Wu announced Thursday.
During times of higher transmission, unvaccinated members will not be allowed in school buildings, but may use accrued time as an alternative to being placed on unpaid administrative leave, according to the announcement.
The agreement also requires new hires to be fully vaccinated going forward. According to Wu, 95% of members are vaccinated.
An overwhelming 84% of members of the city’s largest union voted in favor of the agreement Wednesday night. The Boston School Committee must now approve it.
“We are glad to have reached an agreement with the district that will uplift the health and safety of our educators, students, and communities, while still being able to retain our educators who have chosen to remain unvaccinated,” the union said in a statement. “The agreement takes important steps to promote public health and to mitigate classroom staffing disruptions.”
Mayor Wu also released a statement, saying she is grateful to the majority of teachers who have already gotten vaccinated.
“This overwhelming ratification vote of a policy that has already boosted vaccination rates across our workforce and will ensure that all new hires must be vaccinated will help us prioritize a safe and healthy environment for students and staff,” the mayor said.