BEAUFORT COUNTY, S.C. (WTOC) - Phase 1B of the vaccine distribution plan has been in effect in South Carolina for nearly two weeks. Making millions of people eligible to get the vaccine and a large part of that group is teachers.
Nearly 1,000,000 South Carolina residents have been fully vaccinated. 1,500,000 have started the process. Of those numbers, over 48,000 are in Beaufort County. That is nearly 1 in 40 Beaufort County residents.
There’s one group of Beaufort County residents who are especially excited to get the vaccine
“We are very glad that they have become available, and I think it brings the teachers a little sense of comfort knowing that some of them have had one, some of them have had second shots, coming into the building every day that they are a little bit safer,” Hilton Head Middle School Principal Pat Freda said.
Teachers were not eligible to get the vaccine until Phase 1B began in the last few weeks. Several vaccination pop-up clinics have been established by Beaufort Memorial and Hilton Head Regional to vaccinate those teachers that want to participate.
“We are making it available for them to go and get the shot if they want it, we do it. And so, I feel like we are definitely bringing a sense of comfort to the building.”
From those events, over 1,000 teachers have successfully started the vaccination process.
“I would think that 80 percent have received the first shot.”
The district says there is no way to track how many teachers have gotten the vaccine outside of his clinics, but Freda says she is just happy her teachers have an extra tool to stay safe.
Vaccines are not mandatory for teachers or any staff in the school district, but they are going to give them the opportunity as often as they want it.