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Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, tells "Axios on HBO" that states should prioritize teachers for vaccinations as part of reopening schools for in-person learning.

Between the lines: Weingarten declined to say whom teachers should be prioritized over.

  • "If we are saying that prioritizing in-person learning is important, the teachers and the bus drivers that are working in places that are reopening should be prioritized," she said.
  • In previous statements, Weingarten said teachers should be vaccinated alongside others in the 1-B priority group.

AFT is the country's second largest teachers union, representing 1.7 million members in cities like Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles and New York.

  • Last September, Weingarten told Axios that she'd support a requirement that teachers be vaccinated before returning to classrooms.
  • She later walked that back, arguing that while she supports vaccination, she also recognizes that some teachers have been scared off by misinformation.
  • According to a recent survey, 67% of AFT teachers said they've either been vaccinated already or plan to be vaccinated as soon as possible. Sixteen percent says they either don't plan to get vaccinated or aren't yet sure.

Editor's note: This story has been updated add Weingarten's prior statements that teachers should be vaccinated in the 1-B priority group.

Go deeper

Feb 20, 2021 - Axios on HBO

Preview: "Axios on HBO" interviews AFT President Randi Weingarten

On the next episode of "Axios on HBO", Axios business editor Dan Primack interviews American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten.

  • Catch the full interview and much more on Sunday, February 21 at 6 p.m. ET/PT on all HBO platforms.

The SAT is going digital

A practice SAT. Photo: Alex Garcia/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

The College Board announced Tuesday that the SAT will be delivered digitally in the U.S. in 2024.

Why it matters: The College Board said it's seeking to make the SAT "more relevant," as some colleges start to ditch the college admissions exam altogether.

2 hours ago - Health

Pfizer begins clinical trial for Omicron-specific COVID vaccine

A health worker in Palestine preparing a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech's coronavirus vaccine on Jan. 24. Photo: Majdi Fathi/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Pfizer and BioNTech announced Tuesday that they have started clinical trials for a reformulated vaccine to protect against the Omicron coronavirus variant.

Why it matters: The rise of the Omicron variant has forced vaccine makers to reassess the effectiveness of their vaccines.