Arlington Heights graduate Isaack Knapp said he wants things to go back to normal. He respects the safety measures in place, he added. (Photo by Cristian ArguetaSoto)

Arlington Heights High School graduate Isaack Knapp wants things to go back to normal, he said, but he understands how serious the pandemic has been.

“For my 18th birthday, I wanted to go hang out with some friends, but I wasn’t able to because my dad had COVID,” Knapp said. “That really sucked.”

Knapp, a first-year student at Texas Wesleyan University, was one of many who received a vaccine this week at Arlington Heights. The Fort Worth Independent School District administered Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines at 14 campuses. 

After the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention endorsed the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for use on children between 12 and 15, the school district collaborated with Perrone Pharmacy to supply 180 doses to each of the campuses.

Perrone Pharmacy previously partnered with local private high schools to provide vaccines for students and their families, owner Paula Perrone said. Eagle Mountain-Saginaw ISD partnered with the pharmacy first and Fort Worth ISD followed.

“It’s all about local, you know, being involved in your community, and helping your community,” Perrone said. “Love your community, and they’ll love you back.”

Mary Spradlin, the mother of 15-year old Thomas Spradlin, said she couldn’t wait to get her son vaccinated. More than a week ago, Thomas was not eligible to receive a vaccine. (Photo by Cristian ArguetaSoto)

Arlington Heights freshman Thomas Spradlin, 15, received the shot this week about as early as anyone his age in the country. Until a little over a week ago, the vaccine age requirement was 16.

“I signed him up here because it is at school. It is super convenient,” Mary Spradlin, Thomas’ mother, said. “There was a slot right when school was ending so that just made it easy, and I didn’t want to put it off — we’re ready to have him vaccinated.”

Fifteen-year old Alex Olguin also received his vaccination at Arlington Heights. Olguin is attending school in person this year, and he wanted to get vaccinated to add an extra layer of safety, he said.

“I wear my mask everywhere,” Arlington Heights freshman Alex Olguin said. “I wanted to do it just to be safe.” (Photo by Cristian ArguetaSoto)

“I wanted to do it just to be safe,” Olguin said. “It’ll be safer for us and the faculty.”

The district is planning on providing the second dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine on June 9, before students are released for the summer. Perrone Pharmacy is expected to host another round of vaccination clinics in August before the next school year begins, Perrone said.

To sign up for a vaccination appointment with Fort Worth ISD, visit the booking page.

Cristian ArguetaSoto is a reporting fellow for the Fort Worth Report. Contact him at or via Twitter.

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Cristian ArguetaSoto

Cristian ArguetaSoto is the community engagement journalist at the Fort Worth Report. He can be reached at or (817) 317-6991.

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