The Vaccination Situation


Ellie Snow, Staff Writer

 The second week in March marked a full year of what most in Massachusetts consider the true dawn of the pandemic. That’s 365 days of school faculty strenuously adapting their schedules, teaching styles, lesson plans, and overall mindsets to provide a safe and structured academic year for their students. With a calendar year gone, and Scituate High School’s full return to the classroom on April 12th, an important question remains: When will everyone be vaccinated?
SHS math teacher Jamie Forde shared his thoughts on the current situation. For Forde, an ideal vaccination would’ve come earlier, though he really hoped to have his first vaccination by the end of March. Forde was appreciative of the district’s help in relaying information on the vaccine, thanks to the valiant efforts of District Nurse Leader Kellie Roche.
Unfortunately, the vaccination scheduling and registration process proved to be notoriously unreliable and difficult to maneuver in Massachusetts, and the staff at SHS are no stranger to these vexations. “I have tried to log on and it’s been fully booked, or there’s a technical glitch in the website. It’s been circular where I’m sent to one page and then that page sends me back to the original page. So, it is a bit frustrating navigating the website for sure,” explained Forde when discussing his own experience with the Massachusetts vaccine appointment website.
Though the process itself may be taxing, the Scituate teaching community is starting to make significant headway with their vaccines. SHS students found some of their classrooms without teachers on March 11th and 12th, as these days marked the first COVID vaccinations for many Scituate teachers.
Vaccination concerns, for the most part, are resolved for Scituate teachers, but the second sector of the SHS community, the students, remain vulnerable, especially freshmen and sophomores who may not be not old enough to be vaccinated.
Forde explained, “We have a situation where staff are comfortable going back full in-person with less distance between students, once vaccinated. However, this only protects the staff. My concern is the students as well.”
SHS junior Sarah Snow said she holds the same sentiments as many other SHS students and would rather be vaccinated and on the road back to normalcy. She recognizes, however, that she is not considered a top priority on the vaccine list: “I think it’s fair to say most kids want the vaccine, but we recognize other people have to come first. As a younger person without pre-existing conditions, if I got COVID it probably wouldn’t be severe. Obviously, I’m still scared of getting it, but that’s more out of fear of who I transmit it to than my own well-being. I for sure want to be vaccinated, but I’m also sure people need it more than I do right now,” she explained.
Like many other working students at SHS, Snow hopes her involvement in the food industry will give her some level of priority for the vaccine.
The vaccine situation will continue to unfold in the weeks and months to come, marking another chapter in a dark age that overshadowed the high school and college experiences of so many students. For those students who were consistent and genuine in doing their part to stop the spread and save lives, the coming months may offer glimmers of hope.