Many have been wondering what is happening with SB 658 and asking for an update… We have wonderful news!
SB 658 was assigned to a Senate conference committee. This conference committee decided to reject the house amendments and instead put forward a new set of amendments. These new amendments are as follows:
- The State Department of Education shall provide and ensure that each school district in this state provides, on the school district website and in any notice or publication provided to parents, the complete Oklahoma law regarding immunization requirements and exemptions for school attendance
- *New* A board of education of a public school district or a technology center school district, the board of regents of an institution within The Oklahoma State System of Higher Education, the governing board of a private postsecondary educational institution, the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education, the State Board of Education or the State Board of Career and Technology Education shall not:
- Require a vaccination against COVID-19 as a condition of admittance
- Implement a mask mandate for students who have not been vaccinated against COVID-19.
- Require a vaccine passport as a condition of admittance to or attendance of the school or institution
- *New* A board of education of a public school district or a technology center school district may only implement a mandate to wear a mask or any other medical device if specific requirements are met and creates a process for parents to appeal to remove the mandate.
Read the full text of the bill here.
Now that the bill is changing again, it must be heard in the senate and then heard in the house again before it can head to the governor’s desk to be signed.
Here is how to take action to support SB 658!
- Email your STATE senator asking them to co-author SB 658 and to vote yes when it is heard on the Senate floor. If you do not know who your Senator is, use this link to find them. Your Senator’s email will follow the email@example.com format. If you need any help finding your senator or their email, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will be happy to help you!
- In the subject line of your email type “FROM YOUR CONSTITUENT: Yes on SB 658”
- In the body of your email briefly explain why you support this bill. You can talk about how confusing enrollment notices are whenever exemption information is excluded. If you have pictures or screenshots of unclear enrollment notices, please include those. Tell your legislator about your child’s experience wearing a mask at school, or your concerns over the Covid-19 vaccine being mandated or creating two segregated classes of students, the vaccinated and the unvaccinated.
- If your Senator has not coauthored this legislation, ask them to become a co-author to show his or her support. You can see which Senators are co-authors here.
- At the end of your email, include your full name and address. Your Senator’s Legislative Assistant will use this information to verify that you are registered to vote in the district.
- Share this link with your friends and family and ask them to reach out to their Senator.
- Join us at the Capitol on Monday, May 24th at 1 PM! We will be speaking with legislators about this bill. You can register to join us and get more information by clicking the button below. You can also use this time to pick up OKHPR gear. Make sure to place your order ahead of time and use the code ‘pickup10’ to receive 10% off as a thank you for saving us on shipping costs!