HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — Hartford is putting teacher vaccinations on a fast track with a new mass vaccination clinic. It’s part of a new partnership with Trinity Health of New England.
State officials want it to provides a sense of relief for educators who take a chance every time they step inside a classroom.
Educators and school staff will be vaccinated at the clinic on Thursday; 750 more will get their shot on Friday. Educators said the process is moving faster than they thought it would.
“This moment is a sigh of relief, not just for me but for the kids as well,” explained Hartford Public High School social worker, Elizabeth Nieves.
The district reports 1,500 public school workers across Hartford were the first to get vaccinated at the clinic, which is operated by Saint Francis Hospital.
“It is a very exciting day for us at Hartford Public Schools,” said Superintendent of Hartford Public Schools, Dr. Leslie Torres-Rodriguez.
Hartford Public Schools is prioritizing younger grades because they are the ones spending the most time in classrooms.
Nieves was among the first to get vaccinated.
“We also want to keep our families safe, so I think the transition and the COVID shots are coming at the right time.”
Governor Ned Lamont and Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin were there to mark the occasion.
“We owe it to them to get them vaccinated as quickly as we can,” Bronin said. “The clinic falls on the same week the district transitioned back to full-time, in-person school after months of hybrid and remote learning. 10th, 11th, and 12th grades are on a hybrid model.”
Governor Lamont praised health workers and educators, despite being heckled by a lone protestor with a bullhorn.
“We’re getting our state back on our feet again,” he said. “One cranky guy with a megaphone does not deny the fact that this is a great day for Connecticut.”
Trinity Health of New England has administered over 63,000 COVID-19 vaccinations to date.