LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — A new map from the Arkansas Center for Health Improvement (ACHI) shows the vaccination rate among residents of each Arkansas school district.
The map, the result of a partnership between the ACHI and Arkansas Department of Health (ADH), displays the percentage of fully vaccinated residents in each of the state’s 234 school districts.
“Once again, we are seeking to provide local information to support local policymakers in decisions related to COVID-19,” said ACHI President and CEO Dr. Joe Thompson. “This will allow them to know how much protection a community has achieved in support of schools.”
The districts with the highest vaccinations are:
- Bentonville, 46%
- Fountain Lake, 45%
- Pulaski County Special, 45%
- Eureka Springs, 43%
- Little Rock, 43%
- Cleveland County, 42%
- Magnet Cove, 42%
- Lakeside, 41%
- Jessieville, 41%
- Rogers, 40%
Charles Lee, assistant superintendent for general administration of Rogers Public Schools, said higher vaccination rates in the community means more kids are able to learn in the classroom.
“We’re excited about that because it adds another layer of protection for students from having to go home from being quarantined or getting sick,” Lee said.
Rogers Public Schools also has a mask mandate in place for all students, staff and visitors, which Lee said has kept students out of quarantine.
“We have about 300 plus in quarantine, have we not had those safety protocols in place, the mask mandate, we’d be close to a thousand,” Lee said.
Dr. Joe Thompson said no school district in Arkansas has more than half of its residents fully vaccinated.
“That means that the COVID risk is real and present in every school district across the state and that’s why I encourage local school boards to be making the decision to mask all kids going to school because this COVID delta variant is a real threat,” Dr. Thompson said.
ACHI’s website also features maps of COVID-19 infections by school district, ZIP code, and community.
The organization will update the map every Thursday.
ACHI notes that several districts in red are on the outer edge of the state, and data for Arkansans who received their vaccinations in neighboring states is not currently available, which may result in those districts’ rates being underreported.