By Jefferey Jaxen

A lawsuit funded by the Informed Consent Action Network (ICAN) has struck down the mandate requiring a COVID-19 vaccine in order to attend school in San Diego, California.

ICAN’s lead attorney, Aaron Siri, and his team filed a lawsuit on behalf of a parent whose child was mandated to receive the COVID-19 vaccine to remain enrolled in in-person learning in the San Diego Unified School District (SDUSD).  That lawsuit was consolidated with a lawsuit filed by Let Them Choose.  Both plaintiffs moved for a final decision from the Court asking it to find that the district does not have the authority to implement or enforce the Covid-19 vaccine mandate for students.

This morning, a judge for the Supreme Court of the State of California for the County of San Diego ruled that SDUSD’s mandate conflicted with state law and their action was therefore invalid. A copy of the tentative ruling, released prior to oral argument and confirmed after same, can be read here.  

In September 2021, SDUSD’s Board of Education voted to approve a ‘Vaccination Roadmap.’ The roadmap required all students who are eligible to receive an FDA-approved Covid vaccine to be vaccinated in order to attend school in-person and participate in extra-curricular activities. 

Although the court did mention that SDUSD’s ‘Vaccination Roadmap’ for students was a commendable act in its attempt to protect students, the court concluded: 

“Unfortunately, the field of school vaccinate mandates has been fully occupied by the State, and the Roadmap directly conflicts with state law.”  

In addition, the court wrote, “…a COVID-19 vaccine mandate without a personal belief exemption must be imposed by the Legislature. 

The basis for this decision, that school boards in California do not have the authority to require a COVID-19 vaccine, would apply to all school boards across California that are seeking to mandate a COVID-19 vaccine. 

ICAN’s lead attorney Aaron Siri took to Twitter immediately after stating:

Far from some happenstance event no one could see coming, California State Assembly member Kevin Kiley warned back in late October that California schools couldn’t mandate COVID-19 vaccines without personal belief exemptions.

The legal win follows another high-profile move by Los Angeles Unified School District last week. As over 30,000 students faced removal from school due to their refusal to take the COVID-19 vaccine, the LAUSD school board voted to delay the mandate and its penalties until fall of 2022. 


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