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Coronavirus

Vaccinate the teachers

(121 Posts)
Lucca Mon 25-Jan-21 08:29:32

Times article this morning saying the government should do everything to ensure schools can re-open after half term including vaccinating teachers.

Lucca Mon 25-Jan-21 08:32:17

Obviously that’s just an extract. I fully agree. The rest of the article points out the negative effects of schools staying closed as well as the fact that up one million children still do not have the promised equipment to access online classes.

GagaJo Mon 25-Jan-21 08:40:13

Yes, it's logical. As long as all healthcare workers are vaccinated first. And I speak as a teacher.

Lucca Mon 25-Jan-21 08:44:06

Yes. And I speak as a71 year old very keen to get my jab but think teachers should have priority

Galaxy Mon 25-Jan-21 08:45:50

Early years workers as well. There is no chance schools will be back after half term in my view.

oldgoat Mon 25-Jan-21 08:46:05

I was thrilled to hear that my niece and her colleagues, who teach in a Special School where neither they nor their students can wear face coverings, received their vaccinations on Friday.
I would be happy for all school staff to be vaccinated before I get mine. (I'm in the fourth cohort.)

PECS Mon 25-Jan-21 09:15:47

I think they need to be up on the list. We want our schools fully open..if staff are better protected there is a far better chance they will be able to remain open for key worker families and extend that to all sooner.
Most schools do not have 'spare' staff if one is off sick. The government's funds given to school to cover Covid additional costs excludes cost of covering staff absence due to Covid infection. Just for additional cleaning / sanitiser etc.

Alegrias1 Mon 25-Jan-21 09:19:42

The Times article says that vaccinating the teachers would allow them to return to the classroom safely after half term, but I don’t think that’s enough (sorry). Even when vaccinated teachers could still be carriers of the virus and pass it on to others, including the children who could then take it home to their own families. Would we also have to prioritise all the people the teachers are in contact with – TAs, school cleaners, admin staff etc? Their own families? The children’s families? The vaccine gives population wide benefits, not just to individuals, so I think vaccinating teachers would be a politically popular move, but would not necessarily prevent the spread of the virus through schools and wider society. So we could be in lockdown much longer, including with closed schools.

rosie1959 Mon 25-Jan-21 09:24:05

After phase 1 has been completed it should be considered but vacinating teachers will do little to halt the spread.
The children will still mix and take it home to their families. The teachers can still become infected and as it is uncertain if it stops transmission they can then pass it on.
Are young healthy teachers at any more risk than other public facing occupations have they had a bigger death rate?

Alegrias1 Mon 25-Jan-21 09:25:13

What Rosie1959 said smile

Casdon Mon 25-Jan-21 09:36:42

The problem is that sending children back to school and vaccinating teachers won’t stop the spread because children are COVID carriers, and will pass it on to their parents, who will pass it on to others. I totally agree that teachers should be vaccinated, but I can’t see schools reopening until the infection levels are lower for that reason.

PECS Mon 25-Jan-21 09:47:10

I like the idea of schools being full of young healthy teachers! The reality is that school staff are a complete cross sectionof society in age / health etc! I gave up my part time regular supply job at 1st lockdown because at 69 & classed as CEV I was not able to continue. confused I would not go back even after vaccination for the reasons quoted. But having a ' safer' workforce may help to reduce closing classes/ schools for key worker children.

Ellianne Mon 25-Jan-21 09:58:10

Would we also have to prioritise all the people the teachers are in contact with – TAs, school cleaners, admin staff etc? The teachers' own families?
Yes, and rightly so if we are to get on top of the spread of the virus.
I believe schools need to have 2 weeks notice to reopen, so they would need to be told by February 8th. That's a fortnight from now which just about gives time to get a vaccination programme in progress. I would be happy to offer up my place in the queue.

Blinko Mon 25-Jan-21 10:04:32

rosie1959

After phase 1 has been completed it should be considered but vacinating teachers will do little to halt the spread.
The children will still mix and take it home to their families. The teachers can still become infected and as it is uncertain if it stops transmission they can then pass it on.
Are young healthy teachers at any more risk than other public facing occupations have they had a bigger death rate?

Spot on!

Gwyneth Mon 25-Jan-21 10:08:53

I think teachers and school staff should be vaccinated after all frontline health staff. However, there needs to be guarantees from the teaching unions that if this is done teachers and school staff will return to work. I have no confidence that teaching unions actually care for children’s education or the welfare of staff, they are only interested in politicising the situation.

Hetty58 Mon 25-Jan-21 10:09:40

I think reopening after half term is completely unrealistic, unfortunately, regardless of vaccination schedules.

It's a priority, right now, to reduce social contact to the absolute minimum, across all age groups. The virus transmission is totally out of control.

Perhaps after Easter is the target to aim for?

Sparklefizz Mon 25-Jan-21 10:11:59

We can't keep on having surges of infections and deaths followed by yet another lockdown ... there is already lockdown fatigue ..... so the Govt needs to make schools wait to reopen until numbers are reducing.

The statements in the media mention large percentages of drops in the statistics, but they are still frighteningly high.

Ellianne Mon 25-Jan-21 10:14:58

Gwyneth I think you might be right there.

Lucca Mon 25-Jan-21 10:18:09

Gwyneth

I think teachers and school staff should be vaccinated after all frontline health staff. However, there needs to be guarantees from the teaching unions that if this is done teachers and school staff will return to work. I have no confidence that teaching unions actually care for children’s education or the welfare of staff, they are only interested in politicising the situation.

Teaching unions don’t care about children’s education ? I have heard it all now

GranAT Mon 25-Jan-21 10:18:59

I sympathise with all the teachers out there. But Police Officers are not being offered the vaccine in Phase 1. They come into contact with loads of people on a daily basis. Its not always possible to stay at a safe distance and although they do wear face coverings the people they are dealing with do not. They should definitely come before teachers.

ALANaV Mon 25-Jan-21 10:21:21

The trouble is all groups consider themselves a priority which puts great strain on the NHS to provide vaccines for all....health workers, delivery drivers, teachers,postmen, police, children, the elderly, the disabled ...I could go on HOW do you decide WHO should have the vaccination first ? the young may give the disease to the elderly ....vice versa, people mixing may give it to hundreds of others .......asymptomatic people will definitely be spreaders ...but then, they have no idea they have the disease ....and so it goes on, round and round in circles.............government arguing who should be given priority ...then the chosen group gets negative comments because another group thinks it should have been first ..............and suddenly no one is dying of influenza any longer ............pneumonia .............is this massaging the figures and hiding the deaths from other perhaps untreated illnesses by saying they are COVID ...personally I think yes, they ARE covid RELATED as because nothing else is being treated, other illnesses are being said to be as they ARE ....related because there is no treatment or no effective treatment, for other illnesses as COVID takes priority., and it looks better for the government to keep everyone under control by emotional blackmail. I wish it on no one .......but it is a fact of life and sometime we MUST be released from these draconian measures or there will be no economy, no future for the children, more homeless and the complete destruction of democracy .........angry

growstuff Mon 25-Jan-21 10:23:42

Of course teachers' unions want to protect their members - that's their role. However, it's also irrelevant. As others have said, the main issue with having schools open is that pupils infect each other and then take infection home to families. Community transmission needs to be much lower before schools should reopen.

It would make sense to see Easter as a realistic target and then to plan and prioritise. Possibly early years and exam years should attend with others attending on a rota basis. This is what headteachers were suggesting before last Summer, but the government insisted that everybody should attend, with the inevitable consequences.

growstuff Mon 25-Jan-21 10:26:42

ALAN I agree with you. IMO there should be no prioritising of groups other than those at most risk clinically and front-line health and social care workers. Otherwise, the whole thing descends into a playground squabble.

Gelisajams Mon 25-Jan-21 10:27:03

Yes teachers need the vaccination but that won’t stop pupils spreading it to vulnerable family members. As do all the key workers. Then there’s the seldom mentioned low paid warehouse workers etc who have to work in cramped conditions where social distancing is impossible. We all need those people as we now rely on getting our stuff over the internet.
The bottom line is we all need the jab ASAP ! I’m glad I’m not responsible for having to decide the priority lis. 🌸

geekesse Mon 25-Jan-21 10:27:35

Gwyneth said ‘I have no confidence that teaching unions actually care for children’s education or the welfare of staff, they are only interested in politicising the situation.’

This is a vile accusation. Teaching unions have been promoting measures to allow children to return to school since the first lockdown. They have suggested things which would lower the risk of spread, protect the health of children, school workers and families, and allow for a long term return to full time education in school for all children. That the government has chosen to ignore them and instead got us all into a lockdown-release-lockdown cycle is is hardly the fault of the unions.