Online survey of Michigan educators shows half received first vaccine dose

Jennifer Chambers
The Detroit News

An online survey of 22,500 educators by Michigan's largest teachers' union shows 90% want the COVID-19 vaccine but only half have received the first dose.

The Michigan Education Association released the results of its online survey for members on Tuesday. According to the data:

French and English teacher Ian Jellis, of Roseville, stands outside his room as students walk to classes between the first and second periods.

•6.4% have received both doses of the vaccine 

•50% have received their first shot with another 6.7% scheduled to do so

•37% of educators are not vaccinated or scheduled to be vaccinated

In response to a different question, 19.5% of those who haven't received the vaccine said they don't plan to get it and 17.8% aren't sure.

The survey, conducted online from Feb. 2-8, was answered by 22,552 MEA members across the state, including preK-12 teachers and support staff, higher education faculty and staff, student teachers and school retirees. The MEA represents about 120,000 members statewide.

MEA president Paula Herbart said her members see the vaccine as a critical component to reopening classrooms across the state, along with continued mitigation measures like masks, social distancing and sanitization.

"They are following the science and are embracing the vaccines’ potential for protecting their health and safety, as well as that of their students," Herbart said in a statement. "While thousands of educators are still waiting to be scheduled for vaccination because of the short supply of the vaccine, these results show a great deal of progress."

About 20% of MEA members have not heard from their employer about arrangements to get vaccinated by local health departments and 60.7% of those who have received shots or are scheduled to do so secured their appointment on their own as opposed to through their employer, according to the survey.

A nationwide survey released Tuesday by the National Education Association found 18% of educators have been vaccinated, MEA officials said.

Results of the survey can be found here.

jchambers@detroitnews.com