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Indiana Teachers now eligible for vaccine through federal program

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FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WPTA21)- Snider High School teacher, Mark Tojo says he was so excited to hear he was eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine.

"I'm excited to like be able to like fist bump my kids again it's such a little thing but we've all had to be so careful and had to follow all these guidelines and I think there's this personal touch and this human connection that kind of gets lost when you have to act like there's a screen between you and the next person," Tojo said.

Tojo teaches chemistry and physics at Snider and he says getting vaccinated will help him give the kids the best education possible.

"There's a lot of instructional strategies that I'll be able to use when I can like sit next to my kids again especially when we're doing physics problems, its hard to do the math so being able to sit next to them and look at the same thing together it makes a big difference," Tojo said.

Tojo says it's been difficult teaching both in-person and online because there are some assignments or labs that are hard to do over zoom.

"So I have to be really careful to make sure the activities that I'm planning are not going to put the whole virtual students at a disadvantage compared to my students who are in person some days," Tojo said.

That's why he says vaccinating teachers is the first step in having in-person classes, giving the kids the opportunity to get back to some normalcy.

"It's not just the hands on part that the miss out on when we're not in person it's also the dozens of small interactions they have with each other, the ability to look at the kid next to them and say 'hey what did you get on number two'," Tojo said. "It's also the help and support and enrichment they get from working directly with other people from communicating with each other."

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Arielle Cadet

Arielle Cadet joined WPTA in August 2019. The Atlanta, Georgia native graduated from the University of Missouri and serves as Weekend Anchor/MMJ for ABC21. Feel free to connect with her on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, or shoot her an email at acadet@WPTA21.com.

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