NORTH HOLLYWOOD (CBSLA) – With officials at Los Angeles Unified School District requiring all students be tested for COVID-19 before returning to the classroom, many parents have been scrambling to find tests before the start of school next week.
However, families were able to pick up two free test kits per student on Friday at more than 60 grab-and-go sites across the LA school district.
In the meantime, officials at LAUSD said the COVID test positivity rate among students and staff was more than 6% lower than that of LA County.
At Roy Romer Middle School in North Hollywood, 10-year-old Mia Lim picked up her free test kit where they were handing them out from 8 a.m. until noon.
“So, this is a test you can at your home. They give you hand sanatizer, which is cool, masks,” she said.
Students were also able to get tested at Roy Romer.
“The line is long, but it’s going pretty fast. It’s like, honestly, 10 minutes, 10-15 minutes tops,” Booka Lim, Mia’s father, said.
Both students and staff must have a negative test result before the start of school on Tuesday. Students will have the option to test on campus that day, though there may be a significant wait.
“We don’t want any students not to have access to school,” said Megan K. Reilly, Interim LAUSD Superintendent.
Some parents, like John Rubio, the father of an LAUSD student said they just learned about the testing requirements.
“We didn’t know about it, you know? But now we heard about it, yesterday. I just want to get him to school,” Rubio said of his son.
According to the district, a small number of tests have come back with inconclusive results. Officials said those families are being notified to re-test immediately or they can use an at-home kid and upload the results to LAUSD’s daily pass.
“You swab it, and then you put three drops of the liquid on the test and it tells you if you’re negative or positive,” 11-year-old Sara Aguirre said of how the at-home test kit works.
While parents and their children attempt to navigate the learning curve, kid like Mia Lim said they’re anxious anxious to get back to in-person learning.
“Remote learning was kind of hard because it was always glitching,” the 10-year-0ld said. “And now in-person, I can actually see my friends and in real life and talk to them and play with them. So, I find it much better.”
Free testing kits, as well as on-site tests, will be available Saturday from 8 a.m. to noon at the same grab-and-go sites, which can be found on LAUSD’s website.