Skip to main content




Teachers should receive COVID-19 vaccine priority: UNICEF

Teachers should receive COVID-19 vaccine priority: UNICEF

A healthcare worker prepares to administer a Pfizer coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine at The Michener Institute, in Toronto, Canada Dec 14, 2020. (Photo: REUTERS/Carlos Osorio)

GENEVA: The head of the UN children's agency, UNICEF, called on Tuesday (Dec 15) for teachers to be among those given priority access to the COVID-19 vaccines.

"The COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc on children's education around the globe. Vaccinating teachers is a critical step towards putting it back on track," UNICEF chief Henrietta Fore said in a statement.

Teachers should be "prioritised to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, once frontline health personnel and high-risk populations are vaccinated," she said.

READ: Commentary: Concerns over severe allergic reactions to COVID-19 vaccines don't outweigh benefits of vaccination

"This will help protect teachers from the virus, allow them to teach in person, and ultimately keep schools open."

According to UNICEF, at the peak of the first wave of the pandemic at the end of April, "school closures disrupted the learning of almost 90 per cent of students worldwide".

Assuming that schools are not the main driver of community transmission, UNICEF said in its statement that unfortunately, classes currently remain closed for "nearly one in five schoolchildren globally - or 320 million children".

READ: British grandmother is first in the world to get Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine outside trial

We must "do everything in our power to safeguard the future of the next generation. This begins by safeguarding those responsible for opening that future up for them," Fore said.

"The consequences of extended, missed or impaired education are steep, especially for the most marginalised. The longer children remain out of school, the less likely they are to return, and the more difficult it is for their parents to resume work," she said.

BOOKMARK THIS: Our comprehensive coverage of the coronavirus outbreak and its developments

Download our app or subscribe to our Telegram channel for the latest updates on the coronavirus outbreak:​​​​​​

Source: AFP/kv


Also worth reading