LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - It was the first step in getting students back in the classroom in Jefferson County as thousands of educators and education staff lined up for their first doses of a COVID-19 vaccine at Broadbent Arena.
“It gets brighter each week when we stand out here,” said JCPS Superintendent Dr. Marty Pollio, talking about the light at the end of the tunnel.
Starting alphabetically with elementary schools, JCPS teachers and education staff can now get their first dose of a vaccine.
“It’s been 315 days, so it’s approaching that one year,” said Sarah Weedman, a teacher at Atkinson Elementary School. “I’ve only been back to my classroom a couple times. Being able to resume that is really exciting.”
Governor Andy Beshear was on hand and thanked teachers like Weedman in line at Broadbent Arena. Beshear said the entire state of Kentucky is on an unprecedented path for vaccinations.
“With our educators leading by example once again,” explained Beshear, “we are on track, at the moment, to be the fastest state in the country to vaccinate our K-12 educators.”
In Louisville, the thousands of people within JCPS that opt for the vaccine will receive it at Broadbent Arena, weeks before they initially thought possible. That means getting back to the classroom earlier.
“That first week back in school, when we are in schools and we are able to welcome our kids back, we probably won’t be able to give them a hug yet,” said Dr. Pollio. “We’ll still be wearing masks, social distancing, all of those things, but it’s coming soon.”
Health officials said Friday that the roughly 13,000 educators and education staff at JCPS will be vaccinated by the end of the first week of February.