Student input required
Governor Phil Scott and the Agency of Education yesterday announced the School Vaccine Incentive Program, committing $2 million in federal emergency funds to schools that achieve a student vaccination rate of 85% or higher, according to an Agency of Education press release.
Schools that meet this threshold will be eligible for a minimum award of $2,000 and a potential maximum of $15,000 for schools over 90% vaccinated. In order to be eligible, schools must encourage student participation in how funds are spent.
“We know that vaccination is our strongest tool against Covid-19, and getting our kids vaccinated is critical for both their health and education outcomes,” said Governor Scott. “Vermont leads the nation in youth vaccination and we hope that this program encourages even more to step up. As schools students earn these awards, I look forward to seeing the creative ways they come together to put it to good use.”
“Vaccination has been a critical part of our public health strategy for schools since vaccines first became available for students,” said Secretary of Education Dan French. “We know that vaccination safeguards not only our health, but the health of our entire community. This incentive program recognizes that; giving students and families an additional incentive to get vaccinated, and a voice in how the money is spent.”
Public schools and approved and recognized independent schools are eligible. To receive these funds schools must be able to certify that they have met a vaccination threshold and that they sought and considered student input when planning the use of these funds. An 85% vaccination rate for eligible students is the minimum threshold to receive funds.
Funds will be awarded on a rolling basis through April 1, 2022. Funds must be spent by June 30, 2022. Schools will receive $15 per student, for a minimum award of $2,000 and a maximum of $10,000. Schools that achieve a vaccination rate of 90% may apply for an additional 50% of the original award, for a maximum potential award of $15,000.