As Webb hosts students for study groups, sports, and other on-campus programming, every possible precaution is taken to keep students, faculty, and staff safe. The most recent precaution available is vaccines, and Webb faculty and staff are being vaccinated rapidly.
Teachers, educators, and staff working in education settings in LA county are part of vaccination tier 1B, and recently became eligible to receive COVID-19 vaccines. Educators and staff at Webb fall in this category, and Webb has begun assisting them with getting vaccines.
“We have a Webb alum who sits on our Medical Advisory Board,” said Sarah Lantz, Dean of VWS. “Dr. Rahmi Mowjood (’90) has a family clinic in Rancho Cucamonga. His clinic is working through the list of Webb Faculty/Staff and campus residents over 18.”
Faculty and staff are also able to make vaccine appointments for themselves at https://myturn.ca.gov/, which helps Californians to determine their eligibility and find vaccination locations. The Pomona Fairplex has a mass-vaccination site with appointments available for independent school educators.
“I have gotten the first shot for my vaccination, but not through Webb,” said Andrew Neyer, chair of the mathematics department. “I was able to sign up for it on my own as an independent school teacher. I think having all teacher’s vaccinated will allow Webb to expand its on-campus offerings. Obviously, we still have to follow the LA County guidelines, which currently don’t allow for any boarding program. The recent additions of the study group program and in-person athletic practices have been a good opportunity for teachers and students to finally interact in person again! I’m hopeful this trend will continue as the fight against COVID progresses.”
In February, Governor Gavin Newsom announced that 10% of California’s weekly vaccine allotment would be designated for teachers, child-care providers, and school staff. LA county is focusing on vaccinating teachers in order to make the return to school campuses as safe as possible.
Though Webb will not be reopening with in-person classes, vaccinations for teachers and staff will make the on-campus programming safer.
“I think this means that Webb is going to be safer to open up once all the teachers get their vaccines, at least for them; and students can come [to campus] if they feel safe,” Laura Caldwell (‘21) said. “But at least the faculty will feel safe, which allows for a lot more to happen.”
In an email from Mr. Stockdale and Dr. Smith on March 15th, Webb shared that 80% of the faculty and staff already had or were in the process of being vaccinated.
“I feel the more teachers who are vaccinated, the more comfortable the faculty as a whole will be having students back on campus,” Dean Lantz said. “While we love having students on campus in a limited capacity, there is naturally some anxiety because we are still in a pandemic. The vaccination will hopefully bring health and also peace of mind.”
President Biden recently directed all states to make people over 18 eligible for vaccines by May 1st. Though this does not guarantee that older Webb students will be vaccinated, students over the age of 18 will be eligible.
While students are waiting to become eligible for vaccination, inoculation on the Webb campus offers peace of mind to students, faculty, and Webb families.