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McDONOUGH — Henry County Schools has been approved by the Georgia Department of Health to be a COVID-19 vaccination site for district employees.

The site will not open until the state moves to vaccination plan Phase 1B. A transition date has not yet been determined by the state.

Inoculation is not mandatory at HCS; however, district officials said they want to be “fully prepared” when the vaccine is made available to a wider group of residents that will include teachers.

Superintendent Mary Elizabeth Davis said she was ecstatic about the district’s approval.

“This process was a large undertaking, but it was worth it to ensure we are doing our part to keep Henry healthy,” Davis said in a release.

The district will create a drive-thru clinic at the HCS Learning and Support Center. School nurses and other medical personnel will administer the vaccine. A medical director will be hired to oversee the operation with school staff processing consent forms, scheduling appointments and entering immunization data into the state system as well as storing the vaccine.

The school system has also partnered with private schools and day cares to administer the vaccine.

To help determine the number of vaccines the school system may need, district officials are asking employees to complete a vaccine interest survey. The survey can be found on the district’s homepage at www.henry.k12.ga.us and click on HCS Employee COVID-19 Vaccination Toolkit.

“We are thankful that educators were placed in a high priority status under the direction of our Governor,” Davis said. “Our focus is not on the availability of the vaccine, but on making certain we are fully prepared when the shift to phase 1B occurs. This is an exciting opportunity not only for Henry County Schools and its community, but also for other school districts around the state and nation. We hope our efforts will serve as a model for others in their local planning.”

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