Recently, the Government of Saskatchewan announced a School Testing Deployment Plan for COVID-19, implemented by the Saskatchewan Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Health, in collaboration with the Saskatchewan Health Authority. Rapid test kits have been shipped to various groups and sectors, including K-12 schools across the province.
The rapid test kits have been received at Chinook School Division, however Public Health has indicated that they have not identified any current circumstances in Chinook schools where it would be appropriate to use them. Chinook will work with our local medical health officer to determine if and when the optional rapid testing is appropriate, and schools will work with parents and caregivers to ensure consent is in place.
Teachers and school staff will not be expected to administer the tests. The province and SHA have yet to provide personnel or direction for the testing, and we will provide more information once a plan has been developed.
It is important to note that if the rapid testing is utilized in any Chinook school based on direction from Health, it would be completely voluntary and no students or staff will be tested without written consent.
The new variants of concern are very quickly spreading amongst communities in Saskatchewan and we must continue to take preventative measures seriously. Please follow all protocols, monitor for symptoms daily, practice hand hygiene and wear a mask. If you/your child has any symptoms of COVID-19, please call HealthLine at 811, remain at home and follow their directions in regards to getting tested with the Saskatchewan Health Authority lab.