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Health minister declares Israel to administer COVID shots at schools, despite opposition by education minister

Minister of Health Nitzan Horowitz speaks during his visit at Tel HaShomer Hospital in Ramat Gan, August 3, 2021. (Photo: Miriam Alster/Flash90)

Despite opposition from the education minister who said it would be a "crime" to inject children against the coronavirus at schools, the health minister declared that COVID shots will be administered during class time when school begins next month.

“At the start of the school year we will be vaccinating in schools. We will be vaccinating everywhere, because we are in an emergency and we will make every effort we can to get everywhere and vaccinate everyone who needs it,” Health Minister Nitzan Horowitz said.

"We are battling the pandemic with vaccines," Horowitz said in an interview with Channel 12 on Friday.

Last month, Education Minister Yifat Shasha-Biton said she opposes administering the COVID-19 vaccine at schools during the upcoming school year which begins Sept. 1.

“The role of the Ministry of Education is to educate and give children an optimal educational environment,” she wrote on her Facebook page. “Children have been facing emotional distress from the past year and we must not put further social pressure on them in the educational framework.”

She was met with vast opposition for her statement and excoriated as a "corona-denier" and "anti-vaxer" even though she encouraged eligible children to get vaccinated at their heath clinics during the summer, before school starts.

Her policy has been overruled by the Ministry of Health which will exert its authority on school grounds.

Considering Prime Minister Naftali Bennett's request yesterday that Pfizer ask the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to speed up emergency approval to offer the shot to children under 12, this could affect the entire school system, not just middle school and up, this academic year.

Nicole Jansezian is the news editor for both ALL ISRAEL NEWS and ALL ARAB NEWS and senior correspondent for ALL ISRAEL NEWS

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