COVID-19 vaccine clinic held for teachers on first day of expansion

SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) – More people in Georgia are now eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.

Under this next expansion that began Monday, adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their caretakers can get it, as well as parents of children with complex medical conditions.

It also includes educators and staff in Pre-K through 12th grade.

It was the very first day of vaccine eligibility for school communities here in Georgia and Savannah Classical Academy wasted no time vaccinating a majority of their staff.

“After today when we finish we will have just over 82 percent of our faculty will be vaccinated and we have a couple who are going to get it later they are just recovering from some other things but we’ll be above 90 percent of our faculty will be vaccinated within the next couple of weeks,” said Barry Lollis, Executive Director of Savannah Classical Academy.

These are some of the first teachers in our area to get their COVID-19 vaccination. School leaders worked with Coastal Care Partners and Village Walk Pharmacy to bring a clinic directly to their staff. Not only was it at their school, but they also only need one shot. They are getting some of the area’s first Johnson and Johnson vaccine.

“We are able to go to these events, inject one time and then people are vaccinated against COVID-19. It just makes it a little simpler for these big events to get one vaccine for everybody,” said Scott Pierce, Co-Owner of Coastal Care Partners.

Teachers say it’s a relief to have this shot.

“We’ve gone through a lot this year and we’ve been wanting the vaccine for months and months and we’ve just been anxiously waiting our turn to be able to get it. I know first responders and healthcare workers were able to get it immediately and a lot of us teachers felt like we were also sort of on the front lines teaching here in-person. We’ve been in-person since the first day of school in August so it’s really relieving to be able to finally feel like we’re vaccinated and we’re a little bit safer,” said Alyssa Casciotta, 4th grade teacher.

Not only do they feel safe, but say their students are safer now too. More than 30 people were given the Johnson and Johnson vaccine Monday and are hopeful for the future knowing they are one step closer to the other side.

“It’s really nice knowing that we can help them get that extra level of protection and kind of some peace of mind and again it’s showing others that it’s the right thing to do we believe,” said Lollis.