Hundreds attend back-to-school event at Gateway Schools Complex


ST. LOUIS – St. Louis Public Schools want everyone to know that in-school learning is back and that includes safe classrooms. That’s why today a back-to-school event was held at the Gateway Schools Complex.

There were bubbles, backpacks, and free books to enjoy.

“Today, we partner with Local 420, our teachers’ union, to put on a back-to-school immunization event for returning kids,” St. Louis Public Schools Superintendent Kelvin Adams said.

“So, we have immunizations going on, vaccines. Some 300 families signed up for vaccines. We targeted a population of kids and families who were not totally connected last school year. That was about 950 kids, so we targeted that population with food and games, and bookbags and all those kinds of things, to encourage them to get reconnected for the 2021 school year.”

Teachers head back Aug. 9 and have two weeks to prepare for the Aug. 23 start day.

“So, we would normally do a back to school campaign with our members, but today we’re putting our money where our mouth was by having $5 million worth of grants that was available for locals all across the country to do things like you see right now,” said Randi Weingarten, American Federation of Teachers president. 

“Because we have to bring the education community back together again first and foremost to let parents know what the conditions are in school and how to make kids safe. But this one, I’m so proud of they’re doing a vaccination clinic too so we bring vaccines to parents and to kids.”

Adams added, “We realize and understand there will be some quarantining that will have to take place, but we are pushing hard to get every single kid in their seat when school starts on Aug. 23.”   

“We’ll make any kind of adjustment we have to make as the uptick in environment or uptick in cases in the school or classroom or even in the city of St. Louis.”

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