Explaining the District’s Vaccination Plan
DISTRICT | January 22, 2021
Explaining the District’s Vaccination Plan

Chicago Public Schools and the Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) have partnered to begin rolling out the COVID-19 vaccine for CPS staff. Approximately 1,500 CPS healthcare workers are eligible already, and, beginning January 25, additional school-based staff will also be eligible to receive the vaccine as it becomes available. 

Below, you will find answers to anticipated questions about the plan, as well as a helpful chart that outlines how the district plans to provide equitable access to the vaccine. 

Who will be eligible to receive the vaccine? 

The district has divided school-based staff into three groups based on the potential amount of exposure they are expected to have with students and other staff members on a daily basis. Within these three groups, roles are additionally ordered based on the amount of time they have already been required to report in-person. Furthermore, priority will be given to staff who are ages 65 and older or have a high-risk medical condition. 

The chart below outlines how each school-based role will be prioritized based on these factors.

How will the district ensure that vaccines are distributed as quickly as possible and are accessible for all staff? 

CPS is establishing a vaccination corps of CPS nurses who will support vaccination efforts. The district will also oversee four vaccination centers that will be housed in CPS buildings across the city to ensure staff have expanded access to the vaccine. 

Will the district be postponing in-person instruction until staff are vaccinated? 

Public health officials do not recommend delaying in-person instruction until employees are vaccinated. This assessment is based on extensive research that shows schools can operate safely when necessary mitigations such as mandatory mask-wearing, social distancing, and hybrid scheduling are utilized. 

What is the expected timeline to vaccinate all school-based CPS staff? 

CPS expects to begin directly receiving vaccines directly in mid-February. The pace at which the district will be able to vaccinate employees is largely contingent on federal vaccine allocations. 

Who can I reach out to if I have additional questions about being vaccinated? 

The district will continue to provide regular updates on the CPS Reopening page and emails.