Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Virginia Department of Health
State Board of Health
Regulations for the Immunization of School Children [12 VAC 5 ‑ 110]
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11/28/22  9:30 pm
Commenter: Kelly Schmidt

Immunization requirements for children schooled at home are demonstrable government overreach
As a homeschooling parent and mother, I am happy to take a harder course in life in many ways by staying at home, teaching my children, planning their curricula and testing schedules, and enriching their lives with extracurriculars and life skills. I am unwilling, however, to consent guidelines, rules and regulations such as mandatory vaccination protocols expected by public schools for children attending en masse. Informed consent alone ought to dictate that medical treatments should be consented to only after knowing the full measure of risks and benefits associated with them, and additionally while under no pressure or threats of loss of ability to school one’s own children from the confines of one’s own home. This means that it is possible that a person could accept or refuse a vaccine based on their judgment of risks and benefits. We must acknowledge that there are risks to any medical intervention or treatment and this is admitted to by medical professionals themselves. There are indeed people who have been proved to be harmed by vaccines and they have  been paid money for the damages. Thus, that harm can happen from a treatment such as this is inarguable. Children schooled at home are voluntarily and obviously excused from the particulars of the state schooling system, especially when the state begins  to make rulings about what medical treatments ought to be taken by those not in the public school and at what time they should occur. 
The state should embrace a vaccination schedule  that allows parents to decide which vaccines their child receives or does not receive, based on perceived risk or benefit. Enforcing these one-size-fits-all schedules means enshrining a plan where there is no choice for parents to decide what is best for their child. What’s worse, the plan is seemingly only updated by adding to the existing list,  and the parents and children are left to take on all the risks of new individual treatments and to shoulder the possible burdens of negative health effects from multiple treatments. At a minimum, the state immunization regulations ought to be amended to include a definition of informed consent. 
Parents additionally must be able to obtain medical  exemptions where appropriate, e.g. judgment of high risk to benefit ratio, allergic reactions to components of vaccines, previous negative health episodes during or post-vaccination, etc. Medical exemptions are famously difficult to obtain and few doctors want to give them out, in part due to fear of retaliation taken by state regulatory agencies. Also, these exemptions can be refused by the school or health authorities which nullifies parents’ valiant efforts to get them despite the backlash they may or do receive. Right to medical exemption must be preserved at the very least.
A final note about the vaccination schedule and COVID-19: there is evidence the COVID vaccines are associated with heart inflammation, such as myocarditis and pericarditis which can be serious or even deadly. In addition, children have a very low mortality rate when it comes to contracting COVID. Not only that, but it has been shown and seems demonstrably true just looking around the population that the COVID vaccines and boosters do not prevent transmission. Anecdotally, I know multiple people who work in healthcare and they have all been vaccinated, if not boosted, and they also have all had COVID at least once, if not multiple times since 2020. This is also true of some of my extended family, neighbors, acquaintances, etc. Mainstream news outfits also admit this, despite claims to the contrary when the vaccines were rolled out. Here is another example of why these medical treatments must be assessed for their risks and benefits, with parents allowed to decide what is the appropriate step to take for their child. If their child is high-risk for serious COVID illness, perhaps they would assess whether vaccinating is the correct move for their child. Other parents with low-risk children may choose otherwise, as they may not want to risk any possibility of taking an otherwise healthy child and giving them a new heart condition or any other potential ailment. The ability to choose the treatment or not based on information about its pros and cons is the fundamental basis of informed consent. 

Thank you for your time.
CommentID: 206375