University disenrolls hundreds of unvaccinated students

Students return to the University of Virginia for the fall semester in 2017.
Students return to the University of Virginia for the fall semester in 2017. Photo credit Win McNamee/Getty Images
By , Audacy

The University of Virginia has disenrolled more than 200 students it said failed to comply with the college’s COVID-19 vaccine requirement before the school year begins.

The university said if students chose to get vaccinated or file a medical or religious exemption with the school, it would re-enroll in their classes.

In all, 238 students, including 49 who registered for fall 2021 classes, were removed from the university, according to the Virginian-Pilot.

The school will welcome students back to campus for in-person classes beginning Monday.

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University spokesman suggested a number of the students “may not have been planning to return to the University this fall at all,” claiming the school notified the students via multiple avenues, including text messages, emails, and phone calls to parents, of the requirement.

More than 96% of the student body is vaccinated, according to the university. The remaining 4% — about 335 students — submitted medical or religious reasoning for not taking the vaccine. Students granted an exemption must agree to weekly testing and mask-wearing.

Roughly 93% of the university’s employees and 96% of faculty are also fully vaccinated, WVIR reported.

The school said another 184 students who had not been vaccinated could enroll in classes after agreeing to get the shot upon their return to campus.

Coy told WVIR the university will not provide virtual learning for students who choose not to be vaccinated.

The university said because of the high percentage of vaccinations on campus, the school feels confident allowing football games and other close-contact events to return this fall. However, school officials did say they will monitor and reevaluate policies as the pandemic progresses.

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