A dedicated clinic will administer more than 1,500 doses of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine specifically to San Francisco Unified School District teachers and administrators over the next few days.
The first round of shots started Thursday, as the district debates a plan that could have some students back in classrooms as soon as next month.
“I'm really grateful for having any vaccination,” said special education teacher Valerie Perksy, who received the single-shot vaccine by appointment Friday. “It certainly gives me more confidence to be with the children safely so thrilled and looking forward to getting back to educating the children.”
Her students span from kindergarten through second grade. She thinks she may be part of a plan that could have some students back in classrooms next month.
Boris Aguilar is a teachers aide who is also getting vaccinated at this special clinic soley for district employees.
“I'm a bit paranoid to be honest with you but I'm open,” she said. “Getting vaccinated is the first step to being in public so I think I shouldn’t worry.”
San Francisco Unified Spokesperson Laura Dubnick said they paired with Walgreens toa administer the doses at the district’s headquarters.
“This is SFUSD’s first vaccination site but we have been sharing information with staff for weeks about how they can access vaccines at all sorts of locations,” Dubnick said.
The 1,500 doses are a fraction of the district's 10,000 educators.
“We’re developing a system for staff to be able to self report when they receive the vaccine,” said Dubnick. “So far we have heard from about 2,300 staff that they have received the vaccine though we imagine that might be higher.”
Schools have been virtual-only for a year now, prompting frustration and debate over when they can safely reopen classrooms. Parents protested and the city attorney even sued the district.
But Friday, the debate was replaced by hope that comes from a single-dose of COVID-19 protection.