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School staff, Teachers and Childcare Workers Continue Negotiations

On Tuesday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced that 80% of all the School staff, teachers, and childcare workers in the U.S. had received at least the first dose of the vaccine. From pre-K to 12th grade, roughly 8 million workers had been vaccinated by the end of March. President Biden had offered a directive on 2nd March to make all school officials and childcare workers eligible for the coronavirus vaccine.

CDC Director, Rochelle Walensky, said, “Our push to ensure that teachers, School staff and childcare workers were vaccinated during March has paid off and paved the way for safer in-person learning. CDC will build on the success of this program and work with our partners to continue expanding our vaccination efforts, as we work to ensure confidence in COVID-19 vaccines.”

Despite the rapidly increasing number of shots administered to School staff, teacher unions have remained reluctant to make their members return to schools and classrooms. Around the nation, from San Francisco to Chicago, legal battles have popped up surrounding the issue of getting teachers back to classrooms for in-person teaching.

In Oakland, California, an agreement was made in late March to reopen classrooms early for the high-needs students. This would include the homeless, foster, and special needs kids, but it was rescinded after enough teachers did not agree to return. Even after special privileges like vaccine prioritization and cash incentives, they refused.

From 14th April, the Oakland teachers will need to start in-person instructions. Three weeks later, the district and teacher unions agreed to get back in the classroom for select students.

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