The minister of Education and Sports, Janet Kataha Museveni, has appealed to the public to join the government efforts in mobilising teachers and learners aged 18 years and above in all the education Institutions of learning to go for their Covid-19 vaccination jab.
The government recently announced that to reopen schools for all learners across the country, more than 357,500 (65 per cent) teachers must be vaccinated and official statistics show only 38% of teachers have been vaccinated, six months after the government kicked off Covid-19 vaccination.
The government is struggling to secure vaccines for 21.9 million people and so far the country is using donated vaccines from the Covax facility and sympathetic nations like India, Norway, France, and China.
The World Health Organisation last week appealed to wealthy nations to share the scarce shots with poor countries who are yet to immunise their people instead of being used by rich countries as boosters.
Janet Museveni said that the task of mobilising teachers and learners to get vaccinated cannot be left to the Ministry responsible for Education alone.
“As a ministry, we urge all our collaborative stakeholders in the local governments such as district chairpersons and councillors, RDCs and RCCs, CAOs, DEOs among others to go out and sound the trumpet of mobilising teachers to be vaccinated,” she said
The First Lady also extended her appeal to the various fraternity associations that bring together teaching staff, non-teaching staff, head teachers, principals, and other heads of tertiary institutions.
She requested them to use formal and informal structures to get their respective teaching staff and the critical non-academic staff to go get their Covid-19 jab.
“Getting our teaching staff and learners vaccinated is first and foremost for their own personal wellbeing and safety. As you all know, delivery of learning is a highly interactive physical process in the context of our country,” she explained.
She said most formal learning takes place in a designated physical learning environment called a school or institution of learning however, delivery of learning is not by teaching staff alone.
“They are supported by some critical non-teaching staff. Therefore, in our mobilisation efforts for teaching staff to get vaccinated, we do include the critical non-teaching staff that work closely with the learners, ”she said.
The First Lady said they have engaged with the Ministry of Health, to align their efforts towards getting teachers and learners above 18 years of age vaccinated.