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Hampton Roads school divisions work to get students vaccinated

Between now and Thanksgiving, the Virginia Beach Department of Health is making stops in 22 elementary schools with the first dose of the kid's COVID-19 vaccine.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — Kids 5-11 are rolling up their sleeves all over Hampton Roads.

Now that they're eligible for the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine, school divisions in Hampton Roads are doing their part to make the shot accessible to everyone.

"I’m so proud of you! You got this," W.T. Cooke Elementary School's principal told one student as he walked in to get his vaccine.

200 kids rolled up their sleeves Monday night in Virginia Beach.

RELATED: FDA gives the go-ahead for Pfizer's 5-11 vaccine. Here's what you need to know.

"Like we’re superheroes," Charlie Muller said after he got his shot and sticker.

This clinic is one of many in Virginia Beach over the next few weeks

"Between now and Thanksgiving, we’re going to go into 22 different schools," said Bob Engle with the Virginia Beach Department of Health.

He says the clinics are at night so parents can make an appointment to bring their kids after work.

"We feel that having them in the school, kids are comfortable coming to their school. They know the surroundings, they know their parents, they’re more comfortable." 

They even have a therapy dog, which was a big hit.

"I pet it and I love it," said elementary schooler Johanna Wroten.

Kids and parents alike came out of the clinic Monday night saying they feel good.

"It’s nice protection and it gives her peace of mind, too," said Johanna's dad, Ivy.

"I didn’t really feel anything. It didn’t really hurt at all," said 11-year-old Kaela Quinn.

Engle says once they go through these next two weeks, they’ll start gearing up for dose number two.

"After Thanksgiving, we’ll start the second dose cycle in these same schools, same time, same kids coming back to get their second doses," he said. "If they start the vaccination process now, they’ll be fully vaccinated before the Christmas holidays."

For those who are a little nervous about getting the shot, these kids have some advice

"I’d say they shouldn’t be afraid really. It’s just trying to help them out and like prevent them from being sick. I mean like it’s better to be safe than sorry," said Kaela.

"Tip: If you don’t look at the needle, it doesn’t hurt at all," Charlie said.

I think they should be calm so it won’t really hurt as much," said Kaela's little brother, Liam. 

"It’s gonna be okay. Everybody is gonna get it. It’s gonna hurt, but it’s gonna be fine," said Johanna.

Engle says they have about 1,800 appointments left for the first dose in schools. To make your appointment, click here.

RELATED: School divisions begin announcing vaccine clinics for students ages 5 -11

Virginia Beach isn't the only division holding vaccine clinics for students.

Starting next week, Norfolk Public Schools will do the same.

"Peoples Pharmacy" and "Hague Pharmacy" will give the shots during school hours.

Staff will stop by up to eight schools per day, from November 15th through the 19th.

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