TRENTON, N.J. (CBS) — Officials in Trenton moved ahead with their plans to vaccinate teachers, inoculating more than 100 teachers on Saturday.
“We’re ready,” Alfonso Llano, Trenton Public Schools interim superintendent, said. “We’re ready to open up tomorrow.”READ MORE: 25-Year-Old Woman Robbed After Offering $5 To Suspect Asking For Money In Fairmount, Philadelphia Police Say
The push to reopen Trenton’s schools comes with a shot in the arm. On Saturday, the city vaccinated over 100 teachers and school staff at the Henry Austin Health Center.
“The anxiety that people feel right now about whether they’re going to be safe at work is incredible so whatever we can do as a city,” Llano said.
Trenton is following state guidelines so only teachers and staff who are over the age of 65 or have underlying health conditions were eligible to get the vaccine.
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They say they’re here for themselves, but also for their students.
“Virtual learning is OK for one or two days, but months and months, kids are starting to regress, not progress and we need to get back in the classroom,” Enrique Rivera, special education teacher, said.
Learning here in Trenton is currently all virtual, but the plan is to have teachers and students back in the classrooms by May 3.
“At this time, May 3 is about not just vaccines, it’s about readiness for our community to introduce students in school,” Llano said.
In New Jersey’s original vaccination plans, teachers were included in Group 1B. But because of vaccine shortages and the federal government changing its guidelines, teachers were moved down the list.
Trenton’s mayor says teachers should once again be a priority.MORE NEWS: A Behind-The-Scenes Look At Longwood Gardens' $250 Million Expansion Project That Gets Underway Today
“I believe teachers should be equated with police, firefighters,” Mayor Reed Gusciora said. “They are on the frontline, especially training the next generation.”