CYPRESS, Texas — Students were among those rolling up their sleeves Monday in Cy-Fair ISD.
The state’s third-largest district kicked off a COVID vaccination plan that targets students ages 16 and up.
“This is part of our effort to vaccinate all eligible people,” said Dr. Maria Rivera with Harris County Public Health.
HCPH is partnering with CFISD to administer the Pfizer vaccine, which is the only one currently approved for people 16 and up.
Cypress Lakes High School was the first campus to hold an event. But it will expand to the district’s 11 other high school campuses.
"We thought that if we bring the vaccines to the schools, partner with the school district and make it as easy as possible so access is not the barrier for vaccination, that we could help vaccinate that population,” said Rivera.
One of the health department’s vaccination hubs has been at Cy-Fair’s Berry Center and many teachers are among those who’ve gotten their shots.
"I think I'll feel a little bit more comfortable with going to work," said one teacher.
But many, including Cy-Fair’s teacher’s union, see student vaccinations as an important component in making sure next school year is as normal as possible.
“I know there’s some vaccine hesitancy in different pockets all over Texas," said Cy-Fair AFT president Nikki Cowart. "But those who’ve wanted to get a vaccine have been able to do so. And this effort at the high schools makes it even easier."
The health department hopes to expand beyond Cy-Fair and vaccinate as many students as possible before summer begins.
"We have extended an invitation to all the school districts in the area to do some more events and lot of those conversations are already in place,” said Rivera.
Right now, Pfizer has completed trials for children ages 12 to 15. So even younger students might be able to get vaccinations if emergency use is approved.