SUTTON, N.H. — Superintendent Winfried Feneberg and Kearsarge Regional Middle School Principal Stephen Paterson are pleased to share more than 300 students were vaccinated at a clinic at Kearsarge Regional Middle School yesterday.
The district partnered with Greater Sullivan County Public Health Network to hold the clinic, which also worked with the district to offer a clinic to staff earlier this year.
“Now that the Pfizer vaccine has been authorized for those 12 and older, it was important to us to be able to offer an opportunity for our students to get vaccinated at school. It provides a convenient, familiar place for them, and it is a big relief to be able to protect our students further from this virus,” Superintendent Feneberg said. “We’re very thankful to everyone who has worked with us to offer this opportunity to our students.”
Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine was granted emergency use authorization by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Monday, May 10 and became officially available to those aged 12-15 following a meeting of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Vaccine Advisory Committee on Wednesday, May 12.
Pfizer is currently the only COVID-19 vaccine available to those under 18-years-old, and has been determined through clinical trials to be extraordinarily effective at preventing severe illness from COVID-19.
“It has been a great experience working with the nurses and Superintendent to provide the vaccine to teachers and students,” said ” Clinic Coordinator of the Greater Sullivan County Regional Public Health Network Steve Belmont. “We all set out with the shared goal of safely administering as many vaccines as possible. Along with the great volunteers and New London Fire personnel we were able to achieve that goal. Very happy with the outcome.”
The clinic was held at Kearsarge Regional Middle School at 32 Gile Pond Road, Sutton.
“I am grateful that the students can be vaccinated and I am excited for them,” said Marion Reid, of Warner, whose daughter was vaccinated at the clinic. “Moreover, that it is happening at school is both practical and meaningful. All their lives our children will think about this time—the changes and challenges, and the people who muddled through it all with them. That they might endure the year together, and end it being vaccinated together, it’s a bright twist and strangely fitting.”
“It was surreal for me to see how excited my kids were about getting a shot,” said Lori Rockacy, a parent to a student who participated in the clinic. “I honestly never thought I’d see the day. I cannot wait for their lives to get back to the way they should be! We are almost there.”
For some, getting vaccinated at school reinforced the sense of community students and staff have felt this year as they’ve navigated unprecedented challenges due to remote and hybrid learning, new technology, significant public health protocols and requirements, and the realities of the pandemic.
“As I think about this year, I am amazed how our community has come together,” Kearsarge Middle School Nurse Amy Holobowicz said. “Whether remote, or in person, we were together. Every meeting, every discussion, every decision was made with the utmost care and concern for our students, staff and their families. Hosting a Covid-19 vaccine clinic for staff, and now students, brings our community one step closer to a lifestyle we are familiar with! I am so proud of our District.”