The District Offers Free Weekly COVID-19 Tests for Students and Staff

Reese Smith, Staff Writer

The district offers free weekly COVID-19 tests for all students and staff. Every Monday during school hours, these tests are conducted at one of the four different high schools in the district. Student-athletes who participate in mask-less sports are required to take these tests every week in order to compete in school sports and keep themselves and those around them healthy and safe. However, any student or staff member in the district is permitted and encouraged to take advantage of these no-cost tests. For student-athletes, an email is sent with clear instructions; however, for other students, sign-ups can be accessed through the AUHSD website under the transition to in-person instruction & COVID-19 safety information tab. 

“I take the weekly COVID-19 tests for water polo because it keeps all of us safe. It’s super easy and convenient to sign up online and get the test; it takes no more than five minutes,” junior Grace Clark said. Water polo is one of the mask-less sport’s Miramonte offers; in order to keep students safe, players must take part in the weekly COVID-19 tests and get a negative result.

In a survey conducted on The Mirador’s Instagram, taken by 63 students, 60 percent of students said that they do partake in the weekly tests, while 40 percent said that they don’t. One reason some students choose not to take the tests is because they do not know where to sign up for them. 

“The only reason I said no to the poll was because I didn’t even know that our district offers free COVID-19 testing. I normally just get COVID-19 tested with my health care plan, but I would love to start using the COVID-19 testing our district offers,” junior Mikaela Santos said. 

According to the AUHSD website, for the week of March 15,, 0.93 percent of staff members and 0.23 percent of students had been exposed to a positive case of COVID-19 but had not tested positive. For that same week, 0 percent of both staff and students tested positive for COVID-19.

“Each week COVID-19 tests are offered, and required, to Acalanes staff at each of our work sites.  It is a very easy process where we pick up a test kit from the nurse on Tuesdays, do a quick mouth swab, then put the kit in a box. The results come back quickly through an email and a text typically on Thursday morning. The weekly testing as well as being vaccinated makes me feel a lot safer and more confident about going back to school,” staff member Jyllian Smith said. 

Once the COVID-19 vaccine becomes accessible to younger age groups, students who take these tests may decrease. As for now, this percentage, 60 percent, should stay the same or increase if further advertisement is made.