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FPS to provide on site COVID-19 testing for students and staff

Published: Sep. 17, 2021 at 10:36 AM CDT
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FARGO, N.D. (Valley News Live) - Fargo Public School officials announced they are working to create a COVID-19 testing program in schools.

While the program is not yet running, officials said the district is working to have the program available as soon as possible, and they are in the process of hiring the needed staff for the program.

“I feel like the school is doing what they need to to make it easier on everybody and to keep kids safe.” said a Fargo mom, Sarah Smit.

She said she thinks it could help prevent an outbreak by catching positive cases sooner.

“It’s also going to make it easier on families so parents don’t have to take time off of work and figure out where to take their child to get tested, they can do it right there at school.” said Smit.

If an unvaccinated student or staff member is exposed to covid-19 while unmasked they can stay in school by using the program and testing negative every other day for 7 days.

“Making testing available and allowing even close contact children to stay in school is what is best for everybody.” said Smit.

The same program is already available at schools in West Fargo, but due to limited staff the tests must be administered by the kid’s parent or guardian. Students in grades 6-12 can do the test themselves.

“We have 1,000s of children across Fargo in the school district, and we all need to do what we can to keep kids safe.” said Smit

In order for a child to be tested, parents must fill out a testing consent form.

Officials said the program was offered to the district by the North Dakota Department of Health and is funded for FPS. According to its website, each school will have a scheduled time during the day when BinaxNOW rapid testing will be available for students and staff.

Until the program is available, Fargo Cass Public Health is providing testing for FPS students and staff Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

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