LBUSD Mgm't "Pauses" Its Minimal COVID Student Testing
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(Nov. 17, 2021, 10:20 a.m.) -- LBUSD has announced it is "pausing" (with no announced resumption date) the district's COVID-19 testing of 10% of asymptomatic students at each school, although athletes and LBUSD staff will still be required to test depending on their vaccination status,
The action by LBUSD management effective Nov. 15 comes without agendized discussion or voted action on the change by LBUSD's elected policy-setting school board.
The Nov. 12 announcement by LBUSD Superintendent Jill Baker coincides with roughly 1,000 new COVID-19 cases in Long Beach in the first two weeks of November. At least three individual classes at LBUSD schools (Longfellow, Lowell and Webster) have been quarantining and learning virtually as a precaution, LBUSD spokesman Chris Eftychiou says.
In a Nov. 12 message to parents and staff, Superintendent Baker states in pertinent part:
...You may recall that we began the school year by administering more than 60,000 asymptomatic COVID-19 tests to students, resulting in a positivity rate of less than 1%. In mid-September we shifted to testing representative samples of 10 percent of students at each school. In all, we have administered more than 116,000 COVID-19 tests since the beginning of the school year, and we have consistently seen a low positivity rate of less than 1%.
On Nov. 2, the CDC gave emergency use approval to COVID-19 vaccinations for children ages 5-11. LBUSD doesn't currently have a COVID-19 vaccine mandate for students but encourages all eligible persons to be vaccinated.
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