El Sereno students at Wilson High use podcasts and video to promote COVID-19


Barbara Ferrer visits Wilson High

County public health director Barbara Ferrer visited Wilson High in October and recognized the school and its students for its vaccination efforts.

El Sereno — With the help of videos and podcasts, students at Wilson High School have been working to convey to their peers the importance of getting fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

The campaign to get that message across to fellow students is something youth at Wilson have been working on since September, said Principal Gilberto Martinez.

“Students understand the importance of vaccination,” Martinez said. “They took it upon themselves to motivate each other.”

Students had been preparing to launch a campaign, but efforts stepped up once the Los Angeles Unified School District’s Board of Education voted in early September on vaccination requirements.

Other schools are also taking steps to get their students vaccinated. But Martinez said he thinks his nearly 1,500 students will be fully vaccinated well before the district’s January deadline although he did not disclose how many students have the required shots.

Wilson High podcast promotes vaccination

Among the tools students have used for their campaign is a podcast which launched last year to keep students connected after the pandemic lead to school closures, said senior Anahi Barajas, 17, who is the school’s student body president and oversees the podcast.

But once in person classes resumed this academic year, students saw the podcast as a means to talk about COVID and vaccinations. Students have spoken with LAUSD officials and healthcare professionals about the vaccinations on the podcast.

“It’s a great way to encourage students to get the vaccine,” said junior class President Kevin Yang, 16, who is part of the podcasting team.

Students star in vaccination video

They also produced a short video in which student leaders – members of student government, athletes and others – proclaim they are vaccinated while holding their vaccine cards.

Among those who saw the video was Barbara Ferrer, director of the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health.

“I was impressed. Students respect role models,” said Ferrer, who visited the hilltop campus.

The county has a student ambassador program to convey the importance of vaccination to other youth, she said. That message has greater impact coming from other students than if it comes from somebody they don’t have a connection to, she said.

Public health director impressed by Wilson students

The fact Wilson’s students organized themselves to spread solid, accurate information to their peers about being vaccinated was impressive, Ferrer said.

During her visit Ferrer presented a certificate recognizing students’ efforts to get the student body vaccinated.

Students said that meeting Ferrer and being recognized for their work was exciting. But they said that what they’ve been doing was never meant to generate accolades.

“What we want is to promote the safety of students, their families and the community,” Kevin said.

Support community news in 2021

Support community news in 2021

The Eastsider needs your support!

The Eastsider is committed to providing news and information free to all as a community service. But reporting and writing neighborhood news takes time — and money.

Join the other Eastsider readers whose one-time contributions and monthly sponsorships help pay our bills and allow us to provide you the news and info that keeps you connected to your community.

— Jesus Sanchez, Publisher


Source link