By CBSLA Staff

CULVER CITY (CBSLA) – The Culver City Unified School District is believed to be the first in California to mandate its students ages 12 and older get vaccinated against the coronavirus.

“I believe in science,” said Caroline Hoover, a parent. “And I think every child should be protected against the pandemic.”

The district announced this week that all eligible students and staff will be required to get vaccinated.

“We are mandating vaccines for all eligible staff and students,” the district wrote in a letter to parents Tuesday evening. “We will begin gathering vaccine status data immediately.”

According to the district, students and staff will have until Nov. 19 to provide proof that they are fully vaccinated. It’s unclear if the district will allow any medical or religious exemptions.

“It almost feels like they’re having dominion over people and I’m against that,” said Jay Calderon, a parent. “It should be optional. So we’re going to opt-out of that.”

Last week, the state of California announced that all teachers and school staff will be required to either get vaccinated or undergo weekly COVID-19 testing. However, that mandate does not apply to students.

Most Culver Unified students start their classes on Thursday. The district has five elementary schools, a middle school and a high school and serves over 7,000 students.