Rapid COVID testing Could be Coming to Rockford Schools
The last week has been a turbulent one in my household, especially for my oldest daughter. Last Friday she was sent home from school because she had an upset stomach. We took her to the doctor over the weekend to get her cleared to return to school on Monday, which she did, only to have her whole class sent home to quarantine for a week on Monday afternoon.
I am not telling you this story to place blame on her school or any of their staff, I'm not blaming her classmates or their families, I'm not even blaming the health department, but I am telling you this because everything about how illnesses are handled during this pandemic is confusing.
I still firmly believe my kids need to be in the classroom for them to effectively learn, and I also firmly believe that school staff are doing everything in their power to keep our children safe. Thing is...this virus is a sneaky one, and more and more asymptomatic people are spreading the virus unknowingly. Faster testing needs to be available to schools to minimize the confusion and time students are kept at home in quarantine, and I'm feeling hopeful that possibility is just around the corner for Rockford-area schools.
WREX reports that the Illinois Department of Public Health has released guidelines for schools in our state to begin in-school rapid COVID-19 testing;
IDPH said schools can use a rapid test to expedite isolation or quarantine requirements.
School officials must also provide positive and negative results to county and state officials, IDPH said.
Schools need approval and training from the CDC and other healthcare agencies before offering tests.
You can read the entire guidance released by the Illinois Department of Public Health here, but as we head into a wicked cold/flu season, schools doing COVID testing on site might not be a bad thing. What do you think?