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Escondido schools take COVID testing into their own hands

The Escondido Union School District deliberate and created its own central COVID-19 testing web site at its headquarters, after the omicron surge confirmed a necessity.

ESCONDIDO, Calif. — The Escondido Union School District is working an operation of their own, hoping to maintain college students in school.

At the height, a COVID testing web site at their headquarters examined 800 individuals in in the future. Most of these are college students, academics, and their households within the Latino-heavy district.

“When we returned from winter break, that first Monday back, we arrived to our testing center which used to be right in front of our offices and we had a line that was all the way through our parking lot, down the road, into oncoming traffic,” mentioned Dr. Luis Rankins-Ibarra, EUSD Superintendent.

That visible is what he says confirmed them a necessity that pushed them to work. 

After three days of planning, the location opened.

“It’s very quick, efficient,” mother Cecilia Galvez mentioned, as she introduced her son by way of for testing. “It was much easier, I don’t have to be waiting for results for days and its much more convenient.”

Nearly 80% of students within the Escondido Union School District determine as Hispanic and or Latinos. The testing is an inherent service to them and their households, and the group as a complete.

“We have employees that are coming everyday just for an antigen test,” mentioned Ibarra. “They get ready, they’re dressed for work, and they’re just coming here.”

That cuts out a testing middle-man, because the District tries to plug the holes left by trainer absences. 

An inside dashboard reveals what number of academics are out on any given day, due to COVID-19 or different causes. 

Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources, Dr. John Albert, says they noticed 300 trainer absences in in the future, on the peak of the omicron surge.

“We’re looking at these on a daily basis and what we do is we have a contingency plan set up,” Dr. Albert defined.

That plan places a certificated trainer in each classroom every day. Sometimes, meaning the superintendents themselves are instructing class.

“Our main priority is keeping the doors open to learn every single day,” mentioned Albert. “If we don’t have a qualified teacher in the classroom, learning’s not happening.”

Superintendent Dr. Ibarra says the testing web site on the district will keep open so long as there is a want for it.

In the meantime, vaccination charges amongst Latinos are excessive, and the main target is now on getting the group boosted.

“Latinos in San Diego County actually have a pretty high vaccination rate compared to the rest of the country,” mentioned Chicano Federation CEO Nancy Maldonado. “This didn’t happen without a lot of effort from a lot of different groups, so we’re really proud of the work that’s been done.”

Testing on the Escondido Union School District places of work is open Monday – Friday, from 7 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. for workers, and eight a.m. – 3:45 p.m. for college kids and their relations in their households.

The District can be internet hosting vaccine clinics throughout weekdays and Saturdays.

Saturdays, 8 a.m. – 12 p.m.:

  • February 5: Oak Hill Elementary
  • February 12: Central Elementary
  • February 19: Mission Middle
  • February 26: Oak Hill Elementary
  • 2 p.m. – 6 p.m. February 28 at San Pasqual High
  • 3 p.m. – 6 p.m. March 1 at Orange Glen High
  • 3 p.m. – 6 p.m. March 2 at Escondido High
  • 3 p.m. – 6 p.m. March 3 at Del Lago Academy
  • 3 p.m. – 6 p.m. March 4 at Valley High

WATCH RELATED: Pfizer asks FDA to authorize COVID-19 pictures for youths underneath 5 (February 2022)