RUSSELL COUNTY, Ala. (WRBL) – A Russell County grandfather is afraid for his grandchildren and other children’s health by sending them back to school.
James Crews has been hesitant about sending his grandchildren back to school because they’re not old enough to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. He’s also worried about other kids who are not vaccinated and the risk they’re all taking.
“Well my granddaughter is in kindergarten she went to school for four days. She started on Aug. 9, and ever since she’s been to school she’s been sick, we’ve had to take her to the emergency room took her to the pediatric clinic yesterday. The way I feel, if the kids under 12 can’t get the shot, why can’t they stay home,” Crews said.
Crews said he wants Russell County Schools (RCS) to find a solution to better protect the children.
“I don’t know what they need to do, I mean if kids 12 and above are getting vaccinated I think the kids that are under 12 they need to keep them at home. I don’t think they should let them go to school,” Crews said.
Crews said he doesn’t think RCS is taking the necessary precautions to protect students from the virus are limit their exposure.
“I’m going, to be honest with you, I don’t think they know how to do it. I’ve talked to janitors and I can’t give any names but they told me they thought the schools were going to be closed down two weeks after it started. Because it was so bad, Lee County, you see Smiths Station, they went back to virtual learning,” Crews said.
RCS said they’re doing everything in their power to keep students, staff and facilities safe by enforcing students to wear masks. Encouraging students to remain 3 feet apart, eating lunch in the classroom and sanitizing daily.
Crews told News 3 he’s afraid of what may happen if he continues to send his grandchildren to school.
“I’m scared to death because my immune system is really low, even though I had both shots. You can see by the sticker on my hat, I have to get a booster in Nov.,” Crews said.
Crews said if Alabama’s vaccination rate was higher, he’d feel more comfortable sending his grandkids to school.
“I would probably feel a lot safer, I would feel really safer if they found something quick for 12 and under. This is dangerous,” Crews said.
Crews is unsure if he will switch his grandkids to virtual learning if things continue to get worse with the virus.
“I don’t know, I really don’t know. The secretary at the school told me yesterday that since my granddaughter is five years old, she’s not required to go to Kindergarten she’s required when she’s six. Nobody has called me back with the information, they were supposed to call me back,” Crews said.