(The Center Square) – All child care center workers in New Jersey must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, and anyone who is at least two years old must wear a face mask while in a child care center.
The mandates are part of Executive Order No. 264, which Gov. Phil Murphy signed on Monday.
Under the order, any child care center workers not fully vaccinated must undergo COVID-19 testing at least “one to two times per week.” The face mask requirement applies to employees, visitors, students and children aged two and over but provides some limited exceptions, such as during extreme heat or if someone has trouble breathing.
“We know there are already many child care providers who are doing their utmost to protect the children in their care, their employees, and their communities – and we thank them,” Murphy said in a statement. “This order ensures that everyone is abiding by the same strong standards to protect those who are not yet eligible for COVID-19 vaccinations, so that we can continue to offer safe, in-person learning environments for children of all ages.”
The vaccination mandate is effective Nov. 1, while the face mask requirement is effective Sept. 24. Child care centers can implement more stringent testing requirements.
Anyone is considered “fully vaccinated” for COVID-19 two weeks after receiving either a single-dose vaccine or the second dose of a two-dose vaccine.