Amarillo ISD to provide free COVID-19 testing site for students and staff

VIDEO: Amarillo ISD to provide free COVID-19 testing site for students and staff

AMARILLO, Texas (KFDA) - Amarillo ISD is committed to doing all we can to help keep our students and staff safe as COVID-19 surges in our community. We’ve given parents the option to choose between sending their child to school or remaining home to learn virtually.

And, we’ve implemented a variety of safety measures at each campus. Now we’re set to begin another proactive step to help prevent the spread in this For the Record.

Access to testing for COVID-19 leads to quick identification of the virus and quick treatment. It helps mitigate spread of the disease and leads to better outcomes for those who are sick. AISD will now be able to ensure our students and staff have a test if they need one. The District is establishing our own COVID testing site to serve our students and staff. Here’s what you can expect.

The drive-through testing will take place outside the Rod Schroder Education Support Center. We will announce the exact date soon, but we expect to be ready to serve students in the next 10 days. Testing will be done as-needed on the southeast side of the building.

Some key details: You won’t need a referral. If your child has any symptom, you can drive through and they can be tested. All students must be accompanied by a parent who will be required to complete a consent form. And a reminder, everyone must remain inside their vehicle, no walk up testing will be performed.

The tests involve a minimally invasive nasal swab - not the more uncomfortable kind you hear so much about. We’re told they are more than 97 percent accurate.

Rapid results are returned within about 15 minutes and will be emailed or texted to the parent or employee in about an hour.

And by the way, testing is free for AISD students and staff.

For the Record, the positive rate among AISD students and staff remains low at this time. And our data indicates spread of the virus at our schools also remains low. The safety practices in place seem to be working.

As we open our COVID testing center and begin offering free tests to staff and students, we know it means the number of cases in AISD will go up in the coming weeks.

Any rise in cases is concerning. At the same time, this easy access to testing can help prevent spread and plays an important role in helping us all have a better understanding of how widespread the virus is in schools and our community.

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