COVID-19 vaccine eligibility expands to N.C. teachers, school staff and child care workers

Updated: Feb. 24, 2021 at 6:19 AM EST
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Teachers, school and daycare staff members across North Carolina are now eligible for their first COVID-19 vaccine dose.

Teachers, principals, child care providers, bus drivers and custodial and cafeteria staff became eligible for the vaccine Wednesday, Feb. 24.

Several school districts in our area are working with health systems to hold clinics.

In Mecklenburg County, the only teachers getting shots on Wednesday are the ones who secured an appointment on their own.

Before Wednesday, North Carolina was only vaccinating those in Group 1 and Group 2, which includes health care workers, long-term care staff and residents, and anyone 65 years or older. The state expanded vaccine eligibility to Group 3, essential workers, on February 24.

North Carolina will start with teachers, childcare workers and school personnel before expanding eligibility to other essential workers in Group 3 on March 10.

The state anticipates those eligible to be about 240,000 people.

“This is important. Essential workers are just that, essential,” Gov. Roy Cooper said. “They have worked throughout this pandemic and we know that educators can continue to work safely even before the vaccine being administered as long as schools follow state guidelines.”

It’s another step to get children and teachers back into the classrooms safely.

Cooper said that frontline healthcare workers, those 65 and older and staff and residents at long-term living facilities will still continue to receive the vaccine.

In Gaston County, 1,000 teachers and childcare workers will get shots at CaroMont Regional Medical Center.

In Iredell County, they will also give 1,000 shots to teachers and school staff at Iredell Memorial Hospital.

According to an email from Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, appointments are available at two sites:

Novant Health Mecklenburg East Vaccine Site:

Appointments are available beginning Thursday, Feb. 25-Tuesday, March 2 from 4 to 7 p.m.

  • 300 appointments per day

McClintock Middle School:

Appointments are available this Saturday, Feb. 27 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

  • 450 total appointments

In Rowan County, health leaders will begin vaccinating local childcare and school employees against COVID-19.

Novant Health is sponsoring vaccination clinics at the J.F. Hurley YMCA for early child care employees. Rowan County Public Health will host a vaccination clinic Saturday, February 27th, for both Rowan-Salisbury School System and private school staff.

“We are excited to partner with Rowan County Public Health to get local teachers and childcare workers vaccinated,” said Gary Blabon, president and chief operating officer, Novant Health Rowan Medical Center.

Not all those eligible in the new group have been able to secure an appointment to receive the vaccine. Teachers hoping to get vaccinated are anxious to lock in a spot.

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