HISD workers can get $500 stipend, but must be fully vaccinated

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Employees at Houston ISD will now have an opportunity to receive a $500 stipend if they can prove they're fully vaccinated.

During an HISD special meeting on Wednesday morning, the district's board of education approved an incentive program that gives employees a one-time $500 stipend for those who show proof of full vaccination against COVID-19.

The board also approved more time off should an employee need it to isolate.

READ ALSO: HISD school board approves districtwide mask mandate

The paid leave, which accounts for up to 10 days for the 2021-2022 school year, is for all employees who are fully vaccinated, those who are medically unable to be vaccinated, or those who meet religious exceptions.

Proof of vaccination or medical exemption must be submitted to qualify.

The district said religious exceptions must be requested through HISD's religious accommodation committee. Employees who are not vaccinated must use their personal leave time to quarantine.

Once this is all approved by Texas Education Agency, in order for a worker to get the stipend, employees must submit their proof of vaccination to the district's health and medical services by Nov. 19.

HISD said more guidelines will be shared with employees soon.

"The best tool we have in this fight against the COVID-19 pandemic is vaccination," said Superintendent Millard House II. "As vaccinations increase in our communities and schools, the better protected and safe we all will be. The safety of our staff and students continues to be my guiding compass and I am grateful to the Board of Education for approving this incentive that will hopefully encourage more of our staff to be vaccinated."

READ ALSO: HISD superintendent cites science, data for mask proposal

The district said the incentive program is completely voluntarily.

If you're an HISD employee and are looking to get vaccinated, you can visit the city's of Houston's website or the Harris County website to help you track down a location offering vaccinations.
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