LCPS hopes to begin vaccinating teachers soon

Published 5:30 pm Wednesday, February 10, 2021

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Lunenburg County Public Schools (LCPS) are hopeful that its teachers will be vaccinated in the coming days.

“We have 180-plus employees sign up for the vaccine and are waiting on the Piedmont Health District to schedule our vaccinations,” LCPS Superintendent Charles Berkley, Jr. said.

Berkley said a few LCPS employees have been able to secure a vaccination at their primary care physician or have traveled outside of Virginia to receive the vaccination.

Betty Phillips, a first-grade teacher at Kenbridge Elementary School, received her vaccination Tuesday, Feb. 9. She said she was excited that it will allow her to return to life in a somewhat normal capacity.

“I’m very excited,” Phillips said. “You see I’m 65, have a few health issues but most important I’m a teacher and this vaccine enables me to return to the job I love – teaching.”

Which category do you fall into....

  • I am eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine but have not received it (50%, 3 Votes)
  • I am eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine and have received it (17%, 1 Votes)
  • I am not eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine (17%, 1 Votes)
  • I never plan to take the COVID-19 vaccine regardless of eligibility (17%, 1 Votes)
  • I am eligible for the vaccine but do not plan to take it (0%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 6

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LCPS was working on scheduling its teacher vaccinations just days ahead of Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky’s White House news briefing on COVID-19 when 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.

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.