Over a quarter of BC teachers say their experience with the COVID-19 pandemic has made it more likely they will leave the profession over the next two years.

That’s according to the 2021 Fall Health and Safety Survey issued by the BC Teachers Federation.

President, Teri Mooring told Vista Radio in many cases, teacher vaccination rates grossly outperform community rates, especially in Northern Health.

“We also know that’s not necessarily true for every single community in Northern Health. We know that we have some communities with very high vaccination rates that Prince Rupert and Kitimat come to mind and others with lower vaccination rates in terms of the communities.”

“What we are seeing across the board in every single jurisdiction is that teacher vaccination rates are significantly above community vaccination rates. Even though they will be lower, in some parts of the province they are still significantly ahead of those community vaccination rates.”

91% of all teachers in the north are considered fully vaccinated, slightly below the provincial mark of 94%.

Mooring also mentioned the mask-wearing policy also continues to be a point of contention in our region.

“We are having a lot of difficulties having schools adhere to the mask-wearing policy. There has been a lot of exemptions given to parents for their children so that is concerning.”

Also noted in the survey was that over half (50.7%) of all teachers believe the current health measures in place are not adequate.

According to the BC Centre for Disease Control, second-dose vaccination rates continue to lag behind in the following areas:

  • Peace River South 60%
  • Peace River North 63%
  • Fort Nelson 62%
  • Nechako 68%
  • Burns Lake 71%
  • Smithers 73%
  • Quesnel 72%
  • Upper Skeena 77%

In Prince George, 81% of residents 12 and up are fully immunized, this is on par with areas such as Terrace (80%), Prince Rupert (83%), Haida Gwaii (85% and Nisga’a (85%).

Kitimat has the highest vaccination rate among those 12+ at 93%.