ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — Florida is leading the country in children being hospitalized with COVID-19, which is worrying many parents as they get ready to send their kids back to school. 

What You Need To Know

There’s a lot to be excited about in the Grimmer house Thursday night: Jordan is starting kindergarten next week and she and her parents are getting ready for Meet the Teacher night. 

“You excited to meet your teacher?" her mother, Heather, asked.

"Yeah," Jordan responded excitedly. 

Jordan’s parents Eric and Heather just wish they could enjoy this time with her, but news about COVID-19 in Florida has made that difficult. 

“It’s introduced a tremendous amount of anxiety for us," Eric Grimmer said. "Um, with her starting kindergarten, which really should be a day to celebrate."

That anxiety comes from seeing Florida lead the country in child COVID-19 hospitalizations, with 143 total pediatric cases statewide. 

Nemours Children’s hospital in Orlando reports having six, while Arnold Palmer reports nine in their hospital. 

AdventHealth officials said they’re seeing pediatric cases too, but didn't specify how many. 

“We’ve seen patients in all age groups, from teenagers to the elderly patients,” said Executive Director of Critical Care Services at AdventHealth Dr. Eduardo Oliveira. 

And with children 12 and younger, like Jordan, still unable to get a vaccine, the Grimmers are worried those numbers will increase when school starts. 

“I mean, we’re terrified honestly,” Eric Grimmer said. 

The Grimmers are having Jordan and her sister wear masks, but they’re concerned other kids in her school won’t follow suit. 

“You’re not supposed to be worried when you send your children to school, and we’re gonna be worried every day we send them to school,” Eric Grimmer said. 

Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine trial for healthy children aged 6 months to 11 years is underway, but until it is complete, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention still recommends children between the ages of 2 and 12 wear masks.