Coronavirus: Nearly 80% of Springfield City School District employees opt into vaccination

Credit: Bill Lackey

Credit: Bill Lackey

Nearly 80% of employees within Springfield City School District opted into receiving the COVID-19 vaccine next week, according to data from the Clark County Educational Service Center.

The district has the highest number of vaccination opt-ins in the county, with 791 employees out of roughly 1,000, agreeing to receive the vaccine.

That’s much higher than the national average of 44% of educators that say they will likely get the COVID-19 vaccine once it is made available to them, according to a study by Education Week, an online publication focused on education news.

“As the biggest school district in Clark County, we have an obligation to step up and lead by example,” SCSD Superintendent Bob Hill said. “I’m very proud of the patience and perseverance shown from our teachers, staff and administrators since March of last year. We are hopeful that we are inching closer in our quest to get back to the state of normalcy.”

The Clark County Combined Health District, in partnership with the ESC, will administer about 2,700 doses of COVID-19 vaccine to county K-12 school district employees on Feb. 10 and Feb. 13.

Doses will be available to all K-12 faculty who opted into being vaccinated with their district, CCCHD Commissioner Charles Patterson said previously. Numbers were then reported ESC who assisted the CCCHD in securing and scheduling vaccinations.

Representatives from both the CCCHD and ESC said neither organization ran any sort of campaign to encourage school employees to opt into vaccination. Instead, campaigns were left up to individual districts.

“Each district communicated directly with their staff about the vaccinations,” Megan Anthony, spokesperson for the ESC said. “The ESC does not have a position (on staff vaccinations).”

Hill said the district also did not run any sort of campaign.

“I was confident our SCSD family would educate themselves and make the best choice as an individual and for our community. I am pleased with the level of participation,” Hill said.

About 500 schools across the state started vaccinating K-12 school staff this week as part of an effort to bring most students back to in-person or hybrid learning by March 1.

Last week, more than 400 Champaign County school district employees, and some family members, got their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine due to the health district having extra doses available.

Vaccinations given in Champaign County last week included 80 for Triad Local Schools, 110 for Graham Local Schools, 50 for Mechanicsburg Exempted Village Schools, 80 for West Liberty-Salem Local Schools and 120 for the Madison-Champaign Educational Service Center, according to data from the Champaign Health District.

Patterson said last week the health district was flooded with calls after residents heard about Champaign County family members of school district employees receiving shots. He said this will not be the case in Clark County.

“We are not able to do that in Clark County,” Patterson said. “Those vaccines are just for K-12 school employees only. Let’s be very clear. Those doses are spoken for. They are going to those individuals.”

This Friday, roughly 130 Urbana City School District employees are slated to be vaccinated.

Clark County had 11,552 total cases of the coronavirus as of Wednesday afternoon, according to the Ohio Department of Health. The county also had 280 death and 13 probable deaths, according to data from the CCCHD.

Ohio reported less than 4,000 daily cases of coronavirus for the fourth straight day on Wednesday, according to ODH.

While the number of daily cases has slightly increased each day since Sunday, Ohio is still under its 21-day average of 5,099 cases.

Since the pandemic began, Ohio has recorded 906,727 total cases. Ninety-four deaths were reported on Wednesday, bringing the state’s total to 11,430.

Number of Clark County K-12 school district employees who opted into receiving the COVID-19 vaccine:

Catholic Central: 57

Clark County Educational Service Center and substitutes: 155

Clark-Shawnee Local School District: 182

Cliff Park High School: 14

Emmanuel Christian: 39

Global Impact STEM Academy: 145

Greenon Local School District: 105

Guiding Shepard Christian School: 8

Nightingale Montessori Inc.: 22

Northeastern Local School District: 221

Northwestern Local School District: 145

Southeastern Local School District: 67

Springfield City School District: 765

Springfield-Clark Career Technology Center: 72

Springfield Preparatory and Fitness Academy: 12

Tecumseh Local School District: 352

The Ridgewood School: 30

Risen Christ Lutheran School: 10

Source: Clark County Educational Service Center

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