Upper Perkiomen School District Cancels Classes Friday After Staff Members Call Out Sick Due To Vaccine Reactions

Matt Petrillo reports.

Video Transcript

UKEE WASHINGTON: The Upper Perkiomen School District was forced to close today after 40 members of faculty and staff called out sick. Eyewitness News reporter Matt Petrillo explains what happened.

MATT PETRILLO: The superintendent tells us so many people called out sick Friday because of reactions to recent COVID vaccinations.

ALLYN ROCHE: I'm disappointed. I did not want to make this call at all

MATT PETRILLO: The Upper Perkiomen school superintendent called a functional closure for Friday, meaning both in-person and virtual learning have been canceled for the day because 40 teachers and other staff have called out sick.

ALLYN ROCHE: We made the call at 10 o'clock at night, having a strong feeling it was going to get worse, and that would have been probably worse for families at 5:30 to figure those things out.

MATT PETRILLO: Friday's sick-out comes after 175 staff members in the school district received the COVID vaccine on Wednesday from the Montgomery County Intermediate Unit.

ALLYN ROCHE: I feel bad for all the families, and specifically our students, that are kind of off today on a snow day or a traditional day off.

MATT PETRILLO: These kids from the district certainly didn't seem to mind about the unexpected day off.

- I was happy because then you get to play with your friends and just do fun stuff.

MATT PETRILLO: Did your parents tell you why you had today off?

- No.

- I don't know what the reason is.

MATT PETRILLO: Meantime, the school superintendent is hopeful that come Monday his staff will be ready for class with many fewer sickouts.

ALLYN ROCHE: Kind of learn from this. Again, it's a once in a lifetime thing to have that many people participate in that.

MATT PETRILLO: And the superintendent also tells us the district will use its third emergency day already built into the calendar.

At the Upper Perkiomen School District, Matt Petrillo, CBS 3 Eyewitness News.