MISSOULA — Missoula County high school students could win an e-bike, scholarship money or a gaming system just by getting their COVID-19 vaccination.
Missoula County Public Schools students 16 to 18 years old are entered into a drawing if they get their first dose by June 4 and can win the big prizes if they've received their second dose. This age group's vaccination rates are about half of what we're seeing with adults.
Hellgate High School junior Griffin Kinch -- the student representative for the Missoula Education Foundation -- says he got his vaccinations as soon as he was eligible and is encouraging his classmates to do it, too.
"With basketball and lifting, I'm with a lot of people indoors and I feel a lot more comfortable having gotten vaccinated and I"m looking forward to when everyone's getting it and we can all that comfort in those settings," Kinch said. "And I"m looking forward to our school year next year. If hopefully a lot of us who are turning 16 and those already 16 to 18 can get it then we can be back to more normal."
Griffin says being vaccinated also means there's a much smaller chance someone will miss school due to being a close contact with someone who is sick.
There is a vaccination clinic next Monday at Sentinel High School from 7:30 a.m. to 10 a.m. through Granite Pharmacy. Students need their parents with them for the first shot and need to sign up ahead of time.
MCPS and the Education Foundation appreciate the local sponsors who have provided great prizes to encourage the students to get their COVID 19 shots. Students get their first dose to enter but then must be fully vaccinated to win prizes. The deadline to show proof of the first dose is June 4.
Students can show their vaccine cards at the front office in their school.
The Montana COVID-19 tracking map shows that 100,518 COVID-19 vaccines have been administered and 45,518 Missoula County residents are fully immunized.
There have been 8,997 confirmed cases in Missoula County including 8,842 recoveries and 93 COVID-19 related deaths.