12 News Investigates: Madison County teachers, staff receive COVID-19 vaccines

12 News Investigates

JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – COVID-19 has made learning for students a challenging experience, but next year could change.

Hundreds of teachers and staff at Madison County Schools are now fully vaccinated against the coronavirus, which is another step closer to getting children back on the classroom full-time.

Derian Knox is the assistant principal of Highland Elementary School. He received his first shot on Saturday, March 20.

“The amount of people we encounter on a daily basis. We’re constantly around students, we’re around parents, we’re around our coworkers. So I think being vaccinated is important for us,” he explained.

Fast forward to April 10, he received his second Pfizer dose at the gym-turned-clinic located at Germantown High School.

“I went home and took some Tylenol to be on the safe side, and I felt fine,” said Knox.

He continued, “I’m hoping with the amount of people getting the vaccine, we’ll get back to normal, being able to start the year with in person classes, just get the kids back in the building and get them back to a normal routine and just try to get some normalcy in our lives,” said Knox.

Austin Brown, coordinator of district reporting with the Madison County School District, said they had about 350 people get vaccinated.

“We don’t have any other way to know through this effort how many teachers have been vaccinated outside of this effort. In order to be vaccinated here, St. Dominic said you couldn’t be in between shots. So I know we have a lot of teachers in between shots, but again we feel with this effort, and I know in casual conversation with employees that we’re really excited about the number of employees that are in the process of being vaccinated,” said Brown.

After Knox’s second shot, he said he didn’t feel any effects on day one. On day two, he woke up with a slight headache and later that day felt fatigued. He has been back to normal ever since. Knox said that’s small for a disease that’s taken so many lives including one of his family members.

He wants to do his part as much as possible to limit the spread of COVID-19.

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