South Bay School District Testing Students for COVID-19

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A South Bay school district is taking an aggressive approach to fighting the pandemic.

Students in the Evergreen School District have been testing for COVID-19 for a couple of weeks in an effort to keep kids in school and prevent the spread of the coronavirus, especially among asymptomatic cases.

The district starting next week will begin offering flu vaccines and COVID vaccines to students, families and the community. But for now, the district is focused on getting as many students tested for COVID-19 as possible.

Parent Ellie Magana wants to make sure her child is not carrying the coronavirus and brought the second grader to get a test at Quimby Oak Middle School.

"My daughter was exposed in one of her after school activities, and I just want to make sure she was safe to go back to school," Magana said.

The Evergreen School District has been offering all students COVID-19 tests for several weeks. Parents must opt-in to get the weekly test.

Students who fear exposure can get tested immediately -- free of charge -- and have results within an hour. Before, those students would have to quarantine at home for a few days until they could find a test, take the test and provide the results.

"The measures that we are taking are very aggressive and provides us the opportunity to keep out students in school as much as possible," Superintendent Dr. Emy Flores said.

The Alum Rock School District nearby started testing this week. Both districts said they have the infrastructure in place to provide vaccines to 5- to 12-year-olds once the process is approved.

While some parents appreciate the convenience of getting a COVID-19 test on campus, schools continue to struggle convincing every parent to opt-in to the free weekly tests.

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