Central Florida school districts to begin vaccinating eligible employees this week

Several Central Florida school districts are offering the COVID-19 vaccine to some staff members this week.

Lake County looks to be the first district in our area to offer COVID vaccinations to employees.

"On Tuesday, we will be welcoming 800, approximately 800 employees to Tavares High School gymnasium to receive the COVID-19 vaccine," said Sherri Owens, Lake County Schools Communications Officer.

Those eligible are staff members 65 and up, nurses and medication-trained employees who cover school clinics when nurses aren’t available.

The district is working on a quick turnaround. Officials say their vaccination plan was just approved late last week. Employees then given time slots to show up and get the shot Tuesday.

"We had heard long before this weekend that this was something employees wanted and would value so we are very pleased to be able to offer it," Owens said.

Seminole County is offering the vaccine to employees 65 and up Wednesday at Lyman High School. The district says it’s free and optional.

Orange County will be vaccinating school employees Sunday.  

"We’re very pleased to offer a special clinic for our employees. OCPS has 875 employees who are 65 and older," said OCPS Superintendent Dr. Barbara Jenkins in a video posted to YouTube.

The Orange County School Board has asked the governor to prioritize the vaccine for all teachers and staff in face-to-face learning.

Union leaders say teachers feel their health is at risk.

"We have 14,300 teachers in our bargaining unit and 800 are 65 and older. So yes, it’s a start. It’s a baby step but it’s a step in the right direction. We need to get every teacher vaccinated," said Orange County Classroom Teacher’s Association President Wendy Doromal.