Nashville educators began receiving their first doses of the long-awaited COVID vaccine over the weekend. They were administered by health care workers at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. About 1,000 Metro Nashville Public Schools employees had appointments.
“I am relieved because I live with an elderly parent and my main concern has always been for them — not necessarily for myself,” says Maria Heath, a former paraprofessional and current long-term substitute at Old Center Elementary in Goodlettsville. “As far as having the kids back, I am thrilled.”
Going in and getting the shot, says Heath, took less than five minutes. She says the longest part was the post-vaccination observation period, which also lasted only about 15 minutes. She’ll be returning for her final dose in March.
Heath was part of the first wave of teachers to welcome kids back to in-person classes earlier this month. Before that, however, she had already been working inside her school building since November.
Vaccinations will continue throughout the coming months as middle and high schoolers return to school buildings. Metro Schools says more than 5,000 employees have already scheduled an initial appointment.
About 500 #TeamMNPS teachers & staff, including Director of Schools Dr. Adrienne Battle, today received the first dose of vaccine to protect themselves & our community from COVID-19.
About 500 more staff will be vaccinated tomorrow & so far, 5,500 appointments are booked. pic.twitter.com/8B3PjcPOUM
— Metro Schools (@MetroSchools) February 20, 2021