OPINION – It’s been nearly a year since we made the cautious decision to temporarily close our school sites and offices to protect students and staff from being exposed to COVID-19. At the time, our intent was to close school for a few days, maybe a week, but we could have never imagined we’d be a year into a pandemic that has changed the course of our lives on so many levels.

From a family member who lost their job to a local business owner who had no other choice but to close their long-time business permanently to loved-ones that we haven’t been able to hug and hold to sadly losing someone due to the virus, in some form or another, we’ve all been affected.

As Natomas Unified School District Trustees, we know how hard this pandemic has been on school children and their families. This is one of the primary reasons we felt it was important to be a leader in our community by opening a COVID-19 vaccination clinic. By getting our community vaccinated, we are actively contributing to the creation of a healthy environment that helps slow the spread of the virus and ultimately gets our children and staff back on school campuses safely.

Since February 11, we’ve vaccinated approximately 1,000 community members each week. Many in that number are educators from Natomas and from throughout the Sacramento region. In addition to educators, we’ve made concerted efforts to reach residents who represent our diverse community, so we’ve partnered with the City of Sacramento, faith-based organizations, and other community-based groups to spread the word that we’re providing the COVID-19 vaccination to our community.

We’ve seen our intentional efforts make a positive difference with higher percentages of African Americans and Latinos receiving the vaccine in comparison to other metrics.

Whether you’ve decided to receive the vaccine, we encourage you to do your part to make our community safe. Wear a mask or face covering when you’re in public, stay home if you have a temperature or feel ill, keep your hands clean, and avoid large

gatherings. We all must do our part. And if you’re ready to get the vaccine, we’re here for you with our dedicated team of medical professionals. Right now, we are accepting registration for individuals 65 years or older, educators, first responders, and individuals identified in the state priority groups.

As the priority groups widen, we will be able to serve more community members. To register for an appointment, visit www.natomasunified.org. If you need technical assistance or have questions, we have support available Mondays between 8:00 a.m. – 11:00 am. at (916) 561-5253.

Special to the OBSERVER by Natomas Unified School District Board of Trustees

  • Susan Heredia, President
  • Micah Grant, Vice President
  • Ericka Harden, Clerk
  • Jag Bains, Member
  • Lisa Kaplan, Member