Vaccinate our Kids 


Sara-James Ranta, Editor-In-Chief

Vaccinate our Kids 

By Sara-James Ranta 



Early this March, Americans began to see the long-awaited rollout of vaccinations start trickling down to citizens per President Biden’s inheritance, “Operation Warp Speed.” With vaccines being administered each day and over 143 million administered so far (surpassing Biden’s original goal of 100 million) it comes as no surprise to hear the possibility of most adults being able to receive their vaccinations soon. Vaccination rollouts, however, currently don’t include a plan for citizens who are equally crucial for the future and downward fall of this pandemic: children. Specifically children 16 and under, who don’t qualify for any of the FDA’s approved vaccines.

We all know the cliche of “little hands” and the messes they make. In the beginning, what seemed to be major damage control has now been thrown to the wayside. Currently, the U.S just began the start of developing a children’s vaccine for the youth, due to heavily underfunding the research of vaccine efforts for children.

Less experimentation was done for obvious reasons, older generations are just as important; they’re the backbone of the entire economy itself, the older someone is the more it becomes a medical necessity for them to have vaccinations. Their weakened immune systems give them a reason to be immediately protected.

Children, on the other hand, have many fewer risks when it comes to COVID-19. Most of them are asymptomatic, as well as having a much lower chance than adults for death or hospitalization for COVID-19. Seemingly like a blessing and a curse, having less of a risk is actually a greater problem. 

As of early February, and according to Dr. Juan C. Salazar of Connecticut’s children’s hospital, “Both Pfizer and Moderna have been conducting vaccine trials including children as young as age 12, and… Johnson & Johnson plans to test its COVID-19 vaccine in ages 12 and up, followed by infants and even newborns, as well as pregnant women.” However, Salazar also adds “If any of these companies’ trials are successful, the data will need to go through FDA review, followed by… vaccine production and distribution. This process can take a while, especially for very young ages, which are usually tested last.” 

Children are usually tested last in this case because of the lower risk they have contracting the virus, but the risk is the fact that kids are still spreading the virus, whether or not the virus might be less fatal to them. There are also other scientific explanations that go for vaccines across the board, such as the fact that children have a different immune system compared to adults, which then require different formulas and dosage.

Following this, not only does it seem like scientists are starting all over to create a children’s vaccine, the later start to the testing date means it’ll be available later than everything else. Consequently, the children of America are projected to be one of the last waves of citizens to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. Especially with the fall semester far on the horizon, the idea of “going back to school” is the biggest threat to seizing the pandemic, especially when state governors are already talking about rolling back original classrooms and implementing new safety mandates. The problem is, letting kids “play in the sandbox” again because their parents are vaccinated is the wrong idea. The more days we allow COVID-19 to fester on our swingsets, the more of a chance we have at the virus creating its own deadly mutations. What if it mutates into a virus that harms children, that weakens their immune system? What if it mutates into something that isn’t covered by the current vaccine? This is the damage control that’s been in front of the CDC’s faces since the beginning. 

Although the feather of morality flies in the air over the conflict between vaccinations top-down or bottom-up, the same imperativeness and organization that shifted the stage for middle generation vaccination needs to be brought to the administration of our children. All our hard work and progress stands in the fate of even more hard work and perseverance. More to cover as released.