Education in the First State
January 27, 2021

Governor Carney delivers 2021 State of State Address

Educators, school staff begin COVID-19 vaccinations

Delaware School Nurse Association (DSNA) Treasurer Lisa Conover (from the Christina School District) and DSNA President Shelley Bridges (from the Red Clay Consolidated School District) give a thumbs up at a recent COVID-19 vaccination event for Delaware school nurses.

Delaware educators and school staff are gearing up to participate in Phase 1b of the Delaware COVID-19 vaccination plan. Starting tomorrow through Sunday, the Department of Education (DDOE) is hosting vaccination clinics in all three counties. These events are open to those who work in Delaware public and private K-12 schools as well as district early childhood education centers. Separate vaccination events for child care providers will be organized in early February. 
Pre-registration for the DDOE COVID-19 vaccination events began this past TuesdayEducators and school staff are required to request vaccination appointments and self-identify in one of three risk-based stages used by DDOE to deploy the vaccine. The system then sends invitations to register for appointments as they become available. Those receiving invitations will be provided a choice of locations and times for multiple events. 

Only educators and school staff members who are registered will be vaccinated. Beginning Jan. 20, Delawareans over the age of 65 were able to register for a vaccination waiting list at
More information about DDOE's COVID-19 vaccination plan is available at questions, contact

DPH answers vaccine FAQs for educators, school staff

DPH Director Dr. Karyl Rattay discusses students getting the COVID-19 vaccine in a series of videos for educators and school staff.

In a series of online videos, Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH) Director Dr. Karyl Rattay answers frequently asked questions (FAQs) from educators and school staff about the COVID-19 vaccine.

Videos focus on vaccine-related research, protections against the new strain, annual dose requirements and more.

Videos are available online at

Charter Network Teacher of Year: Never underestimate the power of advocacy in a student's life

Editor's note: The following guest piece was written by Melissa Tracy, a National Board Certified high school social studies teacher at Odyssey Charter School and the Charter Network's 2021 Teacher of the Year.
Without the support and guidance of a few influential educators in my teenage life, I very likely may have found myself stuck in the cycle of drug addiction and domestic instability that characterized my home in those same years. As a young student, and now as a teacher, I never underestimate the power of advocacy in a student's life.

I was fortunate to have an advocate, a singular experience that offered me a sense of safety and confidence as a high school student that I lacked elsewhere and taught me a powerful lesson about the value of the pursuit of education. My advocate, Mr. Messenger, was my student government adviser. He encouraged me to join Youth in Government (YIG), a national program of the YMCA that involves thousands of teens nationwide in state-organized, model government programs. The motto of YIG is simple but powerful, "Democracy must be learned by each generation." The program culminates with teens serving as delegates at their state conference, debating bills on the floor of the legislature.

When Mr. Messenger first reached out to me in tenth grade, I was living in a cramped motel room with my family. For the past three years, we had lived in a series of motels after being evicted from our apartment for failing to pay rent. We lived day to day. I distinctly recall feeling embarrassed that I didn't have an address, a phone, or new clothes like my affluent peers. My heart sank when I found out that the cost to participate in Youth in Government: $750.00. Saddened that I couldn't afford the program, I stopped attending the weekly meetings.

Mindfulness videos available for families, educators   
Mindfulness Moment - Video #1 (preschool - grade 6)

The Delaware Department of Education (DDOE) has created a series of 12-minute videos sessions to help students, families and school staff recharge their brains and focus attention. These Mindfulness Moments videos include strategies to build social competence, emotional awareness and self-regulation.

Lessons are differentiated for early childhood (preschool - grade 2), primary (grades 3-5) and secondary (grades 6-12). 

Check out these opportunities to breathe, move, and rest at

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