The CNMI Public School System, through its COVID-19 vaccination campaign “Vaccination for Education,” is making the push to increase the vaccination numbers of its 12-and-older student population and to increase the chances of having face-to-face classes for the 2021-2022 school year.
Up for grabs through the campaign are 14 prizes consisting of smartphones with one-year contracts or $500 cash prizes. The deadline to qualify for the giveaway is Aug. 17, and the winners will be announced on the first day of classes, Aug. 18.
To qualify for the giveaway, PSS asks students to submit their completed COVID-19 vaccination cards to their respective school’s registrar. The number of entrants is undetermined for now since, according to communications and media coordinator Randee-Jo Barcinas-Manglona, a total count of entrants will be done on Aug. 17.
Barcinas-Manglona said the “Vaccination for Education” campaign has been PSS’ main focus in encouraging its students to get vaccinated. The campaign was launched on June 14 this year.
As part of the campaign, several public schools on Saipan, Tinian, and Rota have been or will be used as vaccination sites throughout the month of July. Most recently, Tanapag Middle School was a vaccination site on July 7-8. Next, Marianas High School will serve as a vaccination site on July 13-14 from 8am to 2pm on both days.
Barcinas-Manglona sees the campaign as “an exciting opportunity to offer our students a small incentive for such a huge and important effort.”
While COVID-19 vaccinations are not required, she said the safety of PSS’ students will always be its main priority. “While we are not requiring the COVID-19 vaccination, we are highly encouraging it. The safety, health, and wellbeing of our students remain a top priority and that is why we have partnered with [the Commonwealth Healthcare Corp.] to open up vaccination sites at various school locations on all islands. We are also working closely with CHCC to offer COVID-19 screening/testing at our schools in the near future,” said Barcinas-Manglona.