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ICYMI: School Boards, Superintendents Call Out Sununu For Vaccinating Ski Patrol Ahead of Teachers

In Case You Missed It, school boards and superintendents from the Keene, ConVal, and Conway school districts have all written to Governor Chris Sununu expressing their disappointment following reports that Sununu approved a plan to move ski patrol members -- even out-of-staters and volunteers -- into the first group for vaccinations -- and to downgrade the priority of teachers. Earlier this week, Sununu lied and said teachers weren’t upset about his decision to ignore CDC guidelines and move up members of the ski patrol in the vaccine rollout ahead of teachers. Keene Sentinel: Local school districts urge state to vaccinate teachers earlier

“Representatives of N.H. School Administrative Unit 29 and the Contoocook Valley School District have each written letters to Gov. Chris Sununu, urging him to include school personnel in group 1B, scheduled to begin receiving vaccines before the end of this month. The state’s teachers and other school staff are currently in group 2A, eligible for vaccination beginning in March.”

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“In his letter to the governor, posted on the district website Thursday, SAU 29 Superintendent Robert Malay said, ‘To hear that our staff that provide this essential service required by statute are placed in a second-tier level of priority below a non-essential service (albeit important) that is not required by statute is disheartening at best.’” Monadnock Ledger-Transcript: ConVal School Board pushes for teacher vaccinations “New Hampshire is just one of two states not vaccinating teachers in their first phase of vaccinations despite CDC guidelines recommending they be included, according to a Jan. 20 letter circulated by the New Hampshire chapter of the National Education Association and signed by 339 New Hampshire teachers.” “‘While this alone is cause for concern, we are concerned that you approved members of the ski patrol -- which do not fall under the definition of first responders according to state statute to receive the vaccine in Phase 1a ahead of educators. In addition, according to the Ski Patrol Association -- those in line ahead of educators -- include volunteers, part-time and even out-of-state residents,’ the letter read, with signers including two ConVal teachers, two Jaffrey-Rindge teachers, State Representative Dick Ames, and four other teachers living in the Monadnock Region.” Conway Daily Sun: School board to Sununu: Vaccinate teachers “Only 15 percent of the schools in the state have been able to maintain in-person instruction this school year.” “[Superintendent Kevin Richard] said some staff members have had to quarantine three or four times because of the cohorts they were associated with.” [...] “Richard said when teachers are quarantined, they are isolated. ‘They can't do anything for about 10 days. Those who are doing remote in other parts of the state don't have to deal with those unintended or intended consequences related to quarantining. I think that we can make a case to really say if you're prioritizing educators, we deserve a spot a little bit ahead of those who are remote at this point.’” [...] “Board member Jessica Whitelaw said she already had sent a letter to the governor on her own.” “‘I sent a letter personally last week, as a parent, voicing my concern that educators should be moved, but I also do think that we really, as a district, need to make a statement on this.’”


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