RCPS Staff Receive Vaccine

Ella Vaught, Reporter

On Jan. 29, 2021, the teachers and staff of Rockbridge County Public Schools, Lexington City Public Schools, and Buena Vista City Public Schools had the option to be vaccinated for COVID-19. Over 600 teachers, staff, and administrators were vaccinated after signing up online the week before. The public school systems of Rockbridge County have worked in collaboration with the Virginia Department of Health throughout the pandemic and are especially doing so now with the vaccinations.

Head Nurse Penni Allen has been in charge of the vaccinations and has been instrumental in administering the COVID-19 vaccines. She has also been communicating with the VDH and says that, “we have been working closely with VDH during this whole pandemic, and they have been so supportive.”

One of the teachers vaccinated was Ms. Petriella. She decided to get vaccinated mainly because of her job at the high school. She cites being back in school saying, “now that we are back in the hybrid platform, I want to keep myself as safe as possible… even with the mitigation procedures in place.”

Additionally, she wishes that “more research on [the vaccine] was available,” however she “looks forward to feeling safer” and generally “feeling less vulnerable.” 

Petriella also wishes to thank the school system on the efforts with the vaccinations. “The school division made the process easy and seamless,” she noted and says “The school division should be commended for their effort, first in getting us our shots so quickly and then the administering of them.” 

 The nurses administering the vaccines became certified Medical Reserve Corps volunteers, which was done through an online training. Three VDH nurses were also on site to help administer vaccines. 

RCPS, LCPS, and PMPS will administer the second dose to teachers, administrators, and staff on Feb. 26 at Parry McCluer High School. A makeup date will be made available for those who missed the first dose.