October 19, 2021

What do we do when an employee does not comply with the vaccine mandate?

From School Services of CA

There is no easy answer to this question. It’s complex—there are many layers to this “onion” and management of the order can become overwhelming. LEAs are likely to respond in a number of ways based on their relationship with the bargaining units, bargaining agreements, and past practice, among other LEA-specific circumstances. However, when it comes to employee supervision and management, we stick to one rule of thumb; your response should be fair, it should be consistently applied, and it must be compliant with the law. Failing to respond, which would be highly ineffective, is not an option.

The LEA’s obligation to maintain a safe workplace is at the core of this question, which makes compliance a top priority, even more so than in the pre-pandemic era. Addressing the vaccine mandate through documented policies and procedures is critical, and human resources can rely on the foundational concepts of effective employee management to guide them.

Noncompliance with the CDPH vaccine mandate should be handled as other noncompliance issues are handled, through supervision, employee management, and the progressive discipline process. The statute provides pathways to both certificated and classified formal discipline procedures, but effective employee engagement practices can help mitigate the pathway to formal discipline.