FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) – Health officials at the Arkansas Department of Health say COVID-19 vaccines are one of the best ways to protect students in the classroom.
The Paris School district has just announced a new incentives program to try and improve their vaccination rate.
The superintendent says they’ll be offering $1500 bonuses for any staff member who receives both doses before November 1st and $50 to any student whose family feels it’s appropriate to get the vaccine.
Students will not be on a deadline because they feel more students will be looking to take advantage of this program as they turn 12.
To facilitate this program, they were allocated funds from the Cares Act.
Superintendent Wayne Fawcett says the district currently has a 60% vaccination rate, and the goal in doing this is to get it to 75%. A number he feels would help keep in-person learning a reality.
“At that point, if they are exposed, they do not need to quarantine, and I felt like 75% what is the proper number to be able to keep the schools open regardless. Because last year anytime we had a switch to virtual, it was a staffing issue, not because we had an outbreak,” says Fawcett.
Fawcett says since announcing the program, the feedback he’s got in from staff and parents has been positive for the most part, and he hopes more in the Paris district choose to take advantage as time goes on.