Q & A

  • What is Surveillance testing?

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    COVID 19 Surveillance Testing is a non diagnostic test that detects the presence of COVID 19 even in individuals who may be asymptomatic.

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  • What are the benefits?

    Posted by:

    The benefits of surveillance testing include early detection of positive individuals to limit the spread of COVID 19 in our schools and buildings, as well as, rapid results and notifications for impacted individuals within 24 hours of testing. This allows for parents and staff to make informed decisions regarding healthcare and taking the needed precautions prior to coming to school or work.

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  • Where will testing take place?

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    Viral Solutions personnel will test students and staff at SPARK. District staff will be tested at their respective work sites. Testing spaces will be determined in each building and communicated prior to launch.

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  • Is it mandatory?

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    No, testing is not mandatory, and consent is required for both student and staff participation. Electronic permission forms for in person students to receive testing will be sent starting the week of February 8th, 2021 for Grades Kindergarten through 5th, followed by 6 12 the week of February 15, 2021. We will also send home printed copies with students as well. Translated forms will be sent home in caregivers’ preferred languages. Staff will provide consent when tested, and it will be voluntary.

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  • Who will participate?

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    Students and staff (school based and district offices) will be offered the opportunity for participation in surveillance testing. Staff will provide consent when tested, and it will be voluntary.

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  • When will testing start?

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    Our surveillance testing will begin in (8) elementary schools starting February 1, 2021, followed by the remaining elementary schools the week of February 15, 2021. Testing for Grades 6 12 and district offices will begin after February 15, 2021.

    Surveillance testing at SPARK will happen on February 19th beginning at 8am.  SPARK is scheduled to have testing every Friday morning throughout the remainder of the school year. 

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  • How frequent will testing be?

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    It is our understanding that testing will occur weekly.  As soon as we receive the official dates when SPARK students and staff will be tested, we will share that with our community. 

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  • With testing in place, does that mean students won't have to wear masks?

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    Masks and all other mitigation practices (social distancing, frequent sanitization, hand washing, etc.) will still be required when schools are open for in person learning. Schools will be cleaned throughout the day with a focus on high touch areas. Students or staff who are positive for COVID 19, students or staff who are experiencing COVID 19 symptoms, and students or staff who have been in contact with a person who was positive for COVID 19 will still be temporarily quarantined and assigned a virtual teacher for up to 14 days before returning. This test is an additional layer of mitigation for staff and students. It should not change anyone’s safety practices in or out of school.

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  • Will students lose a lot of class time for the testing?

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    No, the average time to complete a test is about 1 minute.  Medical staff will travel to each classroom, retrieve students who have submitted consent forms and administer tests via cart.  Once a student has been administered the test, they will be allowed to return to class. In the event that a positive test result is received, the school nurse will be contacted and the student will be escorted to the CARE room until a parent/guardian arrives to retrieve them.  Students will then be referred for a confirmatory PCR test administration. 

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  • Is surveillance testing available to students or staff who are not returning in person?

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    Tests are not available to familis who are participating in remote learning or staff who are currently teleworking.  While surveillance testing is not an option, students and staff are encouraged to take advantage of our other testing options available via our school-based health centers, CORE and districtwide drive-up/walk-up site at Douglass High School. 

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  • When would the district/school administration be informed of someone's results?

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    The administration will be informed of results if someone had a positive result and was at school during their infectious period.  This is true for surveillance testing and all other COVID-19 testing and is part of the standard to the contact tracing process.  Principals and school nurses will receive a daily report of test results from Viral Solutions. 

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  • If a student is sent home due to a positive test result, must siblings be sent home as well?

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    Yes.  If one household member is being evaluated for COVID-19, the rest of the household must be quarantined until an alternative diagnosis is made or negative result received. 

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  • What is the district's protocol for tracking COVID-19 cases within a school?

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    STEP 1: REPORT

    In the event a student or staff person receive a positive test result for COVID-19, they must first notify the school or workplace. 

    STEP 2: TRACE

    Upon receipt of the reported positive COVID-19 case as an APS School or office location, we work directly with our local boards of health (Fulton County and Dekalf County) as they conduct contact tracing. 

    STEP 3:NOTIFY & INFORM

    Based on the guidance provided by the local BOH and our APS health services department, notification are sent to impacted staff, students and families. 

    STEP 4:QUARANTINE

    If an individual is found to have close contacts while contagious, those who were in close contact will be required to quarantine for 14 days. 

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Would you like your child to participate in Surveillance testing?

  • Parents are required to provide consent if they would like to have their child/children participate in surveillance testing for Covid19 at Springdale Park.  Please review the following consent forms, print and sign.  You may email the consent form to our school nurses at main campus and the K Center.

    Nurse Carr -  kcarr@apsk12.org 

    Nurse Mac - ayn.mclaurin@apsk12.org

Comprehensive Testing Strategy

  • Dr. Katika Lovett, Assistant Superintendent for Student Services, explains the District’s comprehensive COVID-19 testing strategy and all of the testing options available to students and staff.

Surveillance Testing in APS

  • Viral Solutions, LLC., Co-Founder Ron Sanders, PA-C, demonstrates how the COVID-19 surveillance test is administered.

Viral Solutions in APS

  • Dr. Brian Lefkove, Co-Founder of Viral Solutions, discusses how COVID-19 surveillance testing in combination with other health and safety protocols can help keep us all safe.