The Johnson & Johnson Pause Slows College Vaccinations


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As summer season break looms, schools are racing to inoculate college students earlier than they depart campus. Many colleges and states had banked on the Johnson & Johnson vaccine — the one one-shot Covid-19 inoculation accredited to be used within the U.S. — to realize that purpose.

But on Tuesday, all 50 states, in addition to CVS and Walgreens, halted use of the vaccine after six ladies between 18 and 48 developed blood clots inside about two weeks after their pictures. One died, and one other is in important situation.

Nearly seven million U.S. residents have already obtained the vaccine, together with about one million women in that age vary.

Until this week, the enchantment of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine was simplicity: It may very well be saved in a traditional fridge and required just one dose, which made it notably engaging to schools and universities. But the disruption is not going to solely have an effect on college-aged college students.

“If we really want to have the normal summer that we all are desperate for, getting college students vaccinated over the next month to six weeks will actually make an enormous difference,” mentioned Dr. Ashish Jha, the dean of the Brown University School of Public Health. “Their immunity matters a lot for our society.”

That’s as a result of college students are, Dr. Jha mentioned, “very efficient spreaders of the virus.”

On Tuesday, many well being clinics that serve college students paused vaccination efforts that relied on the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

In states like Ohio, which had made the vaccine a cornerstone of its strategy to inoculate faculty campuses, colleges are trying to find alternate options. In New York, St. John Fisher College had deliberate to host an on-campus clinic on Tuesday to present out 500 doses of the Johnson & Johnson shot to a few fifth of its undergraduate scholar physique, the varsity’s president mentioned. The college is now searching for alternative vaccines.

“It would have allowed us to fully vaccinate them,” mentioned Gerard Rooney, the president. “It’s not impossible with the Moderna and the Pfizer, if we are able to gain access to those vaccines sooner than later. But once the semester breaks, people will distribute.”

Ohio University introduced a shift to Pfizer’s vaccine at native well being clinics that serve college students. Michigan State and the University of Michigan did, too. The State University of New York system, the biggest public college system within the U.S., is working to change strategies for its campuses.

Dr. Jha shouldn’t be overly nervous. He thinks the U.S. will quickly resume the Johnson & Johnson pictures. And even when college students get solely their first dose on or close to campus, they will all the time join a second dose nearer to house.

But for convenience-minded faculty college students, “one and done” was engaging. Last week, Ted Fernandez, a 23-year-old scholar in Florida, took an Uber to a vaccine clinic at Miami Dade College North Campus.

“I got the Johnson & Johnson just knowing, with work and school, the chances I came back for the second one were not very good,” Fernandez mentioned.


Can we truly measure how a lot tutorial floor college students have misplaced throughout the pandemic? Should we even strive?

To many training specialists, the reply is an emphatic sure. Only with this data, they are saying, will states and districts really feel the required urgency to deal with gaps, by spending assets on interventions like tutoring.

But for some lecturers and directors, the reply is extra difficult. Some oppose efforts to have college students sit for standardized checks this spring, saying that testing college students who’ve simply returned to highschool is punitive, even traumatic.

Others reject discussions of “learning loss,” the time period researchers have used to explain how distant studying has slowed many college students’ tutorial progress. They say that specializing in what college students have misplaced — versus the ways in which they’ve tailored and been resilient — dangers stigmatizing them, and dismissing the onerous work of lecturers throughout a uniquely difficult yr.

There additionally could also be destructive penalties for colleges that see a decline of their scores this yr — beginning with upset dad and mom who’ve had their very own struggles throughout the pandemic.

Our colleague Dana Goldstein explored this debate in a bit this week. As she made clear, the query of how a lot college students have misplaced on account of distant studying is inextricably tied to debates over whether or not prolonged college closures have been justified.

Jesse Hagopian, a Seattle highschool trainer and author, informed Dana that learning-loss analysis was getting used to “prop up the multibillion-dollar industry of standardized testing” and “rush educators back into classrooms before it’s safe to do so.”

Experts who imagine it’s vital to measure studying loss wish to create stress on policymakers and colleges to allocate assets to assist college students catch up. But to some lecturers and faculty leaders, that technique appears like an indictment of their efforts and an insult to their college students.


  • New York City will open and revamp its summer school program for all learners.

  • In a shooting at a Tennessee highschool — the first since the pandemic began — the police killed an armed scholar. No one else died; one officer was wounded.

  • In Chicago, highschool lecturers and employees members stayed home on Wednesday in protest of the town’s reopening plan.

  • Regis High School, a outstanding Catholic college in Manhattan, mentioned it might dismiss the Jesuit priest who serves as its president after an investigation discovered he had engaged in sexual misconduct involving a number of adults, together with college staff.

  • After a beloved fourth-grade trainer from Orange County, Calif., was caught on video marching towards the Capitol on Jan. 6, her community split over whether or not she ought to be fired.

  • A superb learn from The Times: While many college students and oldsters have struggled with distant studying, some have truly preferred it. Now, districts are setting up everlasting on-line colleges to accommodate them.

  • A superb pay attention from The Times: In the third episode of “Odessa,” an audio collection in regards to the reopening of a West Texas college district, a quarantine of dozens of band members angers dad and mom and severs friendships.


Kids can decide up on Big Adult Things, even when they don’t have the language for them but. Stephanie Murray wrote candidly in regards to the ache of making an attempt to clarify her despair to her 3-year-old daughter.

“Mom?” her daughter requested, “How come you’re sad all day, Mom? How come you’re sad all the time?”

Murray received recommendation from specialists. In temporary: Don’t be ashamed. Try to not be secretive. Don’t flip your little one right into a care giver. Above all, shoot for what one professional referred to as “age-appropriate honesty.”

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