Some 92.6% of Israeli kindergarten teachers have received a coronavirus vaccine or have recovered from the virus, according to data released by the country's Kindergarten Teachers Union. The data, published Wednesday, was released in order to stop the public incitement that has recently been directed toward education personnel and kindergarten teachers in particular, in light of the gradual return of Israel's education system and growing fears among parents, according to Dorit Hazan, chairwoman of the Kindergarten Teachers Union.
"We must stop the incitement against Israel's kindergarten teachers, it's a social crime," a statement issued by the union read. "Claims of teachers not getting vaccinated are completely unfounded."
According to the data, 72% of kindergarten teachers have received both doses of the virus, 10% have received the first dose and 10.6% hold a recovery certificate, meaning they have recovered from the disease.
Furthermore, the data indicates that the main cause leading kindergarten teachers to enter quarantine was contact with a sick child, rather than with other teaching personnel. Out of 1,500 kindergarten teachers included in the survey, 24% were quarantined after coming in contact with a child diagnosed with the virus, compared to 13% entering quarantine due to exposure to the virus from another teacher. "Israel's kindergarten teachers are getting vaccinated and it has been proven," said Hazan. "The data collected shows that claims of teachers not getting vaccinated are unfounded. The incitement directed at our dedicated kindergarten teachers must stop immediately," she added.The union's position is that those who need to be held responsible for teachers who have not yet been vaccinated are the Education and Health Ministries. "They should be focusing on providing information and reducing people's concerns from the vaccine," the union's statement noted. "Many kindergarten teachers are reporting hostility directed toward them, which is a very serious and alarming situation." The union's statements come after an unusual spike in morbidity rates in kindergartens across the country, with the number of kindergartens shut down due to a COVID-19 outbreak doubling within one week.This may explain the resurfaced panic among some parents that has led to the unfounded and unjustified attack on kindergarten teachers, only trying to do their jobs as best as possible. Next Sunday, children in grades 7-10 who live in green, yellow or partially orange cities are also expected to returning to school.