Lakota West will continue as COVID-19 vaccination hub after district staffers start shots

The coronavirus vaccination of about 1,900 school workers in the Lakota district Wednesday marked the latest move toward giving shots to school employees, which will see a big increase in the coming weeks.

Hundreds of Lakota teachers and staffers filed through Lakota West High School, which was closed along with other Lakota schools Wednesday, to receive the first of two vaccine injections. Other Butler County school systems and private schools will also be seeing their staffs inoculated this week.

Lakota West will serve as the injection distribution center for employees of smaller area school districts Ross, Edgewood, New Miami and Madison as well as those from Butler County private schools beginning today.

Fairfield High School will serve as a hub for its employees and Monroe Schools on Friday.

Lakota Superintendent Matt Miller watched as employees received injections from Kroger pharmacy personnel.

“Hopefully we feel like this is the next step to getting this pandemic and virus pandemic behind us so we can get back some sort of normalcy for our kids and for our families,” said Matt Miller, who joined others in receiving his injection.

Lakota East Freshman School teacher Emily Edwards said the distribution of vaccines has her “hopeful.”

“Today is all about the hope we are getting as a community (and) I am beyond overwhelmed by just by the sheer volume of the number of people who had to work together to make this happen ... within our school community,” said Edwards.

“It’s going to be a great opportunity for us to get some normalcy back in our classrooms as we move forward with these vaccinations.”

Last week Middletown Schools’ employees were the first school staffers in Ohio to receive their initial vaccination, which was coordinated through Middletown’s health department.

The area’s other public and private school employee vaccines will be rolled out over the remaining three weeks of February due to limited supplies, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine recently said.

“Vaccine is incredibly scarce, and we simply don’t have enough to vaccinate everyone at the same time. Therefore, this will be a rolling process, just like it has been during other vaccination phases, with a goal of administering all first doses by March 1st,” said DeWine.

“This rollout schedule is a heavy logistical lift that aims to ensure the maximum number of people can be vaccinated in the shortest amount of time.”

Lakota Schools, which enroll 16,800 students, closed all in-person and at home, remote learning Wednesday to all teachers and other employees to receive the initial coronavirus injection.

“We will get everyone through today,” said Miller. “It’ll be a long day but we’re here and we’re glad our teachers and staff are taking advantage of this awesome opportunity.”

Photographer Nick Graham contributed to this story

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