Dear Team DPS,
As we shared this morning, we are excited to begin offering vaccinations to our school-based staff starting on Monday, Feb. 8, through our partnership with Children’s Hospital Colorado. We wanted to provide you with an update on how the vaccination schedule will work.
In collaboration with our union partners, health advisors, educators and leaders, we developed a COVID-19 vaccine rollout plan that allows us to prioritize equity, limit the disruptions for our schools, and assure the fastest use of the vaccine supply being made available to us.
We will prioritize team members who are frontline essential educators -- those who are critical to the operations of the school and work with our students every day -- such as teachers, paras, substitutes assigned to school, afterschool staff, bus drivers, cafeteria staff, custodians and school administrators. In addition, over the initial weeks of vaccination, we will also prioritize vaccinations for school-based individuals over the age of 65 and those who are on health-related accommodations (either this semester or last semester). An employee’s accommodation will not be cancelled because they got the vaccine.
With a focus on equity and highest need, we have established a priority order that is based on the percentage of a school’s enrollment that qualifies for free or reduced-price meals (FRL). The vaccination schedule will be ordered based on FRL enrollment, starting with the highest-percentage schools.
In our discussions with Denver Classroom Teachers Association (DCTA) and Denver School Leader Association (DSLA) in establishing this schedule, there was a strong commitment to ensure we are living out our value of Equity, prioritizing our service to our students who need us most, and protecting each other, particularly those who have identified themselves, through our accommodations process, as vulnerable individuals.
- In an effort to minimize disruptions to student learning and maximize the efficiency of the vaccination process, each school will likely be assigned a designated day when all staff in that building who want to receive a vaccine will be scheduled to receive it.
- Children’s Colorado’s main Aurora campus (13123 E. 16th Ave., Aurora) is serving as the primary vaccine site, although some vaccines may be offered through a supplemental partnership with Denver Health (660 Bannock St.).
- The vaccination schedule begins Monday, Feb. 8, and staff at the schools scheduled for that day will begin receiving appointment emails from Children’s today. All staff from the school will receive their normal pay for their vaccination day, and they do not need to request time off in the system to attend the appointment. If you feel sick and need to take time off work on the day after you receive the vaccine, please request the sick time in the system as you normally would. Schools’ assigned vaccination days will be made on a rolling basis as vaccine supply is confirmed by Children’s Colorado and Denver Health.
- We have communicated with school leaders that the days when schools are scheduled to have their staff vaccinated will become asynchronous-learning days for students and a remote-work day for staff when they are not receiving their vaccine. Please connect with your school leader if you have questions.
- We will continue to share more information as more members of Team DPS become eligible to receive the vaccine as determined by Colorado state and health officials.
We’re pleased with the developments over the past week that have led to the COVID-19 vaccine being available to our educators much sooner than anticipated, and we’re working hard to get this critical public-health service to our staff while also minimizing disruption to schools and instruction.
For more information and resources about the COVID-19 vaccine, eligibility and timeline for DPS team members and FAQs, please visit The Commons.
Thank you for everything you do on behalf of our students, educators, and families.