Durham to start vaccinating up to 1,000 teachers per week as in-person learning set to return

Posted February 23, 2021 6:33 a.m. EST
Updated February 23, 2021 12:23 p.m. EST

— The effort to get students back to the classroom continues on Wednesday as teachers in Durham County will be able to get a COVID-19 vaccine. The news is a pick-me-up for most teachers, who have been giving lessons online since last spring.

Durham County teachers are learning they can get the vaccine and will return to the classroom soon, for the first time in nearly a year.

Starting Wednesday, health leaders will vaccinate teachers at an expected rate of 1,000 per week. Durham County Public Health Director Rod Jenkins said his team will start providing vaccines to part of Group 3, which includes teachers, school staff and essential workers as noted by the state. Jenkins said more women than men have been vaccinated in Durham County.

The news comes as Durham Public Schools plan for in-person learning. On March 15, kindergarten students through fifth-graders will begin face-to-face instruction on Mondays, Tuesdays and Fridays and will learn from home on Wednesdays. Then, on April 8, sixth- through 12th- graders will begin face-to-face instruction in one of three cohorts and will attend school in rotation two days per week while remaining in remote the other three days when the other cohorts are in the classroom.

The district has been in favor of teachers getting the vaccine with Durham County seeing less cases.

Durham families have until Wednesday to choose all-virtual option for remainder of the school year.

A delayed shipment of vaccines is expected to arrive in Durham by next week, thanks in part to bad weather in many parts of the country. Durham County is currently vaccinating healthcare workers (Group 1) and those 65 and older (Group 2). For Durham County COVID-19 vaccination questions, you can call (919) 635-8150.

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