DC student athletes need to get 1st COVID-19 dose by Saturday to play

Student athletes in D.C. are running out of time to get their first coronavirus vaccine dose in order to meet a the District’s vaccine mandate deadline.

Saturday is the last day students can get their first COVID-19 dose and still be eligible to play on Monday, Nov. 1.

“We are asking all student athletes to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by Nov. 1 to practice and participate in competitions,” Chancellor of D.C. Public Schools Lewis Ferebee told a town hall Wednesday.

“And we’ve communicated that to coaches and athletic directors, so that information can be conveyed to students and family.”

The mandate applies to all student athletes who are 12 and older. Currently, that group can only get the two-shot Pfizer vaccine and there is a wait time of three weeks between doses.

DCPS has a number of youth vaccination sites where young athletes can get their first shot. They can go to either the Fort Stanton Recreation Center or the Dorothy Height/Benning Library.

Both sites are open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesdays and Wednesdays, from noon to 6 p.m. Thursdays and from noon to 5 p.m. Saturdays.

While it won’t be open in time for the first shot, another student vaccine site opens next week at the Columbia Heights Education Campus. That center opens Tuesday, Oct. 12. It will operate from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesdays through Thursdays and from noon to 5 p.m. Saturdays.

“We also have pop-up sites at several schools. And then there are District destination sites as well where students can receive a vaccine,” Ferebee said.

Students who have received two doses can submit a photocopy of their vaccination card to their school’s athletic director. Students who are 18 can do the same with the one-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

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Colleen Kelleher

Colleen Kelleher is an award-winning journalist who has been with WTOP since 1996. Kelleher joined WTOP as the afternoon radio writer and night and weekend editor and made the move to WTOP.com in 2001. Now she works early mornings as the site's Senior Digital Editor.

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