KANAWHA COUNTY, WV (WOWK) – There were hour-long lines out the doors of South Charleston and Capital High School as more than 900 teachers received the COVID-19 vaccine on Thursday.
This was the first teacher vaccination opportunity in the state. Those 50-years-old and above were the ones who qualified.
“We have such a high-risk community that it’s so important that everybody not worry and come out and get the vaccine,” said Kathy Coyle, a teacher at Dupont Middle School.
The rush to get the vaccine comes as Governor Jim Justice promised at-risk teachers they would be vaccinated ahead of in-person learning.
As for returning to the classroom on January 19, it is causing concern amongst teachers since they are only receiving the first dose.
“I’m real skeptical about returning but I think this vaccine is a way to protect myself,” Coyle explained.
Some teachers weren’t so sure about going back to the classroom, like Kanawha County teacher Leola Hariston.
“We’re doing all we can do. And maybe it’s not the safest, but we’re trying,” she said.
Aside from long lines and possible side effects, teachers are urging those to get the vaccine once given the opportunity.
“The risks of taking the vaccine are not nearly as serious as getting COVID itself and I think it’s really worth taking,” Coyle said.
Teachers below 50-years-old will be receiving the vaccine on a later date.