As students head back to school, Governor Tim Walz announced that more than 46,000 students 12-17 years old have received their first dose of COVID-19 vaccine since the launch of the State’s ‘Vax to School’ campaign.

Since July 28, the percentage of Minnesotans 12-15 years old with at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose has increased from 42% to 54.6%. For 16-17-year-olds, the rate has increased from 54.2% to 60.5%. Minnesota is leading the Midwest in reported student vaccinations, as the Walz-Flanagan Administration continues to work to raise vaccination rates and recently released new updates to Minnesota’s first-in-the-nation statewide education testing program.

“As governor, a teacher for 20 years, and a dad — I know how important it is that we do everything within our power to set our children up for a safe and healthy school year,” said Governor Walz. “From the historic investments in education made in our COVID-19 Recovery Budget to free and expanded testing options for every school in the state, I want Minnesota families to know our administration has your back. Minnesota has come together and done good work protecting our state so far, but there’s more to do. For the sake of our students: we need all eligible Minnesotans vaccinated. If you have not done so yet, get your free COVID-19 vaccine to keep our kids in school and parents at work this fall and winter.”

The Walz-Flanagan Administration has prioritized vaccination efforts to keep Minnesota schools safe. Last winter, Minnesota was one of the first states in the nation to expand eligibility to teachers and child care workers on January 19. Minnesota currently leads the Midwest in the percentage of adolescents fully vaccinated, among states reporting demographic data.

The Walz-Flanagan Administration continues to encourage students, their families, and all Minnesotans to get fully vaccinated for the best protection against COVID-19 infection.