RICHMOND, Va. (WAVY) — Virginia Attorney General Jason Miyares issued an opinion on Friday that says Virginia’s public universities “cannot require the COVID-19 vaccine as a general condition of students’ enrollment or in-person attendance.”

“Absent specific authority conferred by the General Assembly, public institutions of higher education in Virginia may not require vaccination against COVID-19 as a general condition of students’ enrollment or in-person attendance,” Miyares wrote in the opinion.

It’s unclear how this will impact Virginia’s state schools in the meantime, as the opinion is only advisory and non-binding, the Virginia Mercury reported.

Miyares says that the General Assembly sets specific immunization requirements for students to enroll in public schools, but the COVID-19 is not included.

“Over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, the General Assembly has amended other statues to address pandemic-related issues,” Miyares said. “To date, the General Assembly has not amended the specific immunizations enumerated in (state code) to include immunization for COVID-19, and boards of visitors may not exercise and implied power to require ja certain vaccine when a specific statue governing vaccination excludes it.”

Former Attorney General Mark Herring had said the General Assembly granted broad discretion to state colleges to set their policies, including vaccinations. Miyares disagrees.

“Although the General Assembly specifically authorized public institutions of higher education to assist the Department of Health and local health departments in the administration of the COVID-19 vaccine, the legislation did not grant such institutions power to impose vaccine requirements,” Miyares said.

Virginia colleges such as William & Mary, JMU and Virginia Tech already stopped vaccine and testing requirements for faculty and staff after Gov. Glenn Youngkin signed an executive order that ended Gov. Ralph Northam’s previous requirements for state employees.

Read the opinion here.