COVID-19 cases continue to surge in Indiana’s K-12 schools for the third academic year. Now the Indianapolis Public Schools district is providing a $300 incentive to all qualifying staff members who are fully vaccinated
The district is using some of its $213.5 million in federal pandemic relief funds to provide the one-time payment to educators.
IPS Superintendent Aleesia Johnson said many building-level administrators have had to step-in for staff members absent from the classroom due to quarantine. Johnson said one of the reasons they’re providing the incentive is to prevent a return to virtual learning.
“If you are exposed as a vaccinated student or staff member and you don’t have symptoms, you don’t have to quarantine,” Johnson said. “So presumably, if the staff vaccination rate is going up and that person isn’t experiencing symptoms, then they are able to continue to work.
IPS staff must submit proof of vaccination by Sept. 30. The district is also considering incentives for students who get the COVID-19 vaccine.
Around 2,600 educators work in IPS, the state's largest school corportation.
The district is also looking into holding more vaccination clinics for student and the community, and providing COVID-19 testing at schools.
The Indiana Department of Health reported a record 3,504 new student COVID-19 cases on Monday. The previous record for most student cases reported statewide in a single week was set in Nov. 2020, with 2,539 cases.