Lake Stevens Teachers get Vaccines

After moving up the list and qualifying for vaccination, teachers prepare to return to school

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Courtesy of Jenifer LaCoursiere

Upskilled Teaching: LSHS Teacher Karen Morton interacts with students through Google Meet during distance learning. She learned a lot about herself and her profession while she taught virtually. “Going out of this, there’s going to be some positives, like me as a teacher, I’ve probably told you this, I was a teacher that wouldn’t take any paper, any assignment electronically. Now I don’t know if I’ll take hard copy assignments anymore,” Morton said.

Lake Stevens teachers started getting COVID vaccines after moving up the vaccine priority list to be first in line for vaccinations on Mar. 2. Teachers receiving vaccines brings hope that their jobs will soon look a little closer to normal.

The vaccine became available to educators across the state when Governor Inslee announced he would be following the recommendations of Biden. President Biden tweeted on Mar. 2, “Today, I am directing every state to prioritize educators for vaccination. We want every educator, school member, and child-care worker to receive at least one shot by the end of this month”.

On Wednesday Mar. 3 at least seven staff members from LSHS received their first doses of the vaccine that fights the novel coronavirus. More teachers plan to partake in the vaccination effort.

“I have an appointment at eleven today to go get vaccinated,” LSHS teacher Kendra Peterson said.

Business and marketing teacher Karen Morton has been waiting for her turn to receive the vaccine.

“It’s about time, so my thought was you know, if getting kids back in school is a priority, I felt that not just teachers but all school staff, bus drivers, teachers, everybody should be a priority for vaccines,” Morton said.

While this effort to protect teachers is an important step in reopening schools, is it enough to return safely to a high school? The majority of people on a school campus are students, who currently can’t receive a vaccine. Some teachers are concerned about a return.
“I absolutely am worried about that. What if I’m asymptomatic and unknowingly pass it along to a student and they go home where they live with their grandma or auntie. We have lots of kids who live in multigenerational households. I would feel HORRIBLE if I unknowingly passed it along to someone,” teacher Andrea Ancich said.

Returning to in-person learning is inevitable, and the current plan is to come back Apr. 19. There will be plenty of safety measures put in place to keep all students and staff as safe as possible. It will be important for students to take the safety protocols seriously and safely return for the rest of the year. To find out more information on the return, visit the LSSD hybrid learning webpage.