Mayor Bill de Blasio, Schools Chancellor Meisha Porter and Health Commissioner Dr. Dave Chokshi announced Wednesday that every school that serves students aged 5 through 11 will host vaccination sites beginning on Nov. 8. This will provide easy access to life-saving vaccines for the 400,000 eligible public school students in this age range at 1,070 sites.
“New York City remains one step ahead in the fight against COVID-19,” de Blasio said. “School vaccination sites will make it as convenient as possible for our children to get life-saving protection. This is a win for families and a win for our ongoing recovery efforts.”
Vaccination is the leading public health prevention strategy to end the COVID-19 pandemic and has proven to significantly reduce the health effects of COVID-19 and reduce the transmissibility of the disease. At this time, approximately 78% of New Yorkers between the ages of 12 and 17 have received at least one dose of this vaccine.
Each site will host a vaccine clinic for one day between Nov. 8 and 15. All students must have verbal consent from a parent or guardian to be vaccinated. If the parent or guardian cannot accompany the student, the student should be escorted by another adult who can reach their parent/guardian by phone to obtain verbal consent at the time of vaccination. Additionally, clinic staff will work with families to set up second dose appointments at non-school locations.
Families can find out when their school will host a clinic at schools.nyc.gov/covid19. No appointment is necessary and all locations will be serving 5-11 year olds enrolled at a school in that building exclusively. Clinics will be open between either 7 a.m. and 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m.-4 p.m., depending on the location.
Vaccines are safe, effective and free. You do not need to have health insurance or share your immigration status to get vaccinated. The Pfizer vaccine was studied in children ages 5 to 17 and shown to be very safe and effective. The process was monitored closely by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, other organizations and independent experts. The Pfizer vaccine has safely been given to millions of children in the U.S. Decades of research show that vaccines prevent disease and are one of the most important things a parent can do to protect their child. Vaccines protect you by preparing your immune system to recognize and fight serious and sometimes deadly diseases, such as Measles and Whooping Cough.
At this time, the COVID-19 vaccine is not mandated for New York City public school students but is highly recommended to keep school communities safe. As of Sept. 27, all New York public school staff are vaccinated.
“After two years of disruption, this is the moment we’ve been waiting for – this life-saving vaccine is available to the vast majority of the young people in our schools,” Porter said. “To every parent, when you get your child vaccinated you are not only protecting them from this disease, but you are also protecting everyone else in their life and ensuring that their education goes uninterrupted this year.”