CCPS begins to vaccinate teachers

Published 6:00 am Friday, February 12, 2021

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Charlotte County Public Schools (CCPS) has begun vaccinating its teachers.

“We have over 180 school employees who have registered for the vaccine through our school nurse coordinator,” CCPS Superintendent Robbie Mason said. “The health department has been given those names and vaccinations have already begun.”

Mason said the school division has informed the Piedmont Health District they are willing to host an onsite vaccination clinic during the day to help with the process of vaccinating CCPS and other county employees, but the supply of vaccines going to the health district continues to be a problem.

“I am pleased to see our employees begin receiving vaccinations,” Mason said. “I hope that everyone who wants a shot will be able to get one as soon as possible.”

CCPS was working on scheduling its teacher vaccinations days ahead of Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky’s White House news briefing on COVID-19 in which Walensky said, “There is increasing data to suggest that schools can safely reopen, and that safe reopening does not suggest that teachers need to be vaccinated.”

Walensky told reporters during the Wednesday, Feb. 3 briefing that vaccinations of teachers are not a prerequisite for safely reopening schools.

In late January, the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices voted to put “essential frontline workers,” which include teachers, next in line to receive a COVID-19 vaccine after first prioritizing health-care workers and long-term care facility residents.

A study published by the CDC in January noted little evidence of the virus spreading at schools in the U.S. when precautions such as wearing masks, social distancing and ventilation were taken.

According to the CDC the pandemic has disrupted in-person learning in the U.S with approximately one half of all students receiving online-only instruction since March 2020.

Daryl Prewitt whose children attend CCPS said he is all for reopening the school in person

“Opening schools is of great importance to me,” Prewitt said. “Vaccinate the teachers/administrators and open the schools. That’s important. Our children and their future are at stake.”

On Friday, Feb. 5, Gov. Ralph Northam called on all K-12 school divisions in the commonwealth to make in-person learning options available by March 15.

CCPS is currently in a hybrid learning mode for its students.