Give it a shot: New COVID-19 vaccine for ages 5-11


Photo credit: Savannah Seabrooks

By Arei Swain and Savannah Seabrooks

The Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine was approved by the FDA on Dec. 11, 2020 and the Moderna vaccine approval followed only a week later. At the time, the approval was for anyone that was 16 or older. As of now, 59.1% of the United States population is fully vaccinated. In many instances, the vaccine was required to return to jobs. Recently, on Nov. 3, the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) announced that the vaccine is now available for children ages 5-11.

Despite the vaccine being tested multiple times, math teacher Benjamin Godwin acknowledges that vaccinating children is a tough topic for some parents to think about. Godwin, who has kids ages 5-11 of his own, says that he has concerns regarding how recent the development of the vaccine was, but ultimately believes that it will be beneficial in decreasing the case count and severity of the virus.

“I think that with it being brand new we’re kinda like the guinea pigs,” Godwin said. “It will certainly significantly decrease the chances of them contracting [the virus] but also significantly decrease the chances of them having a serious reaction or dying.”

Learning resource center teacher, Sonya Townsend, has kids ages 5-11 and feels that the vaccine is safe. Based on her own experience with the vaccine, she feels that it is safe for her children. 

“I’ve been vaccinated since February of 2021 and got a booster the first week of school this year so I didn’t have any side effects, and I have managed not to catch Covid,” Townsend said. 

On the opposite end of the debate, senior Dezzy Garvin, is skeptical about the safety of the vaccine for her younger siblings at this point and time, simply due to their age. Garvin says that she would not want her siblings to have the new vaccine themselves in fear that it would affect their health in a negative way.
“I would not [be comfortable] because I feel like they are too young which means that it would affect them a little bit worse,” Garvin said. “I think [it might affect] their breathing and certain sports and things of that nature.”

Both students and parents have similar concerns about children receiving vaccines and the safety of the shot. The concerns range from just not knowing everything about the vaccine to being anxious about keeping children safe and feeling as if the kids are test subjects to the new dose. However, Godwin goes back to science and the mass amount of testing that has been done. 

“I think that the science has been done, and has been done by multiple parties, trials have been done, and everything points to very very little to no adverse concerns to the vaccine itself,” Godwin said. 

This poll has ended.

Do you have siblings between the ages of 5-11?


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