AWHS COVID-19 testing site uncovers recent surge in positive cases

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Naomi Betz

AWHS students Maggie Maloney, Albee Bodle, and Ronan Wood waiting for a COVID-19 test Wednesday (1/12/22) morning.

On Monday, Jan. 10, the AWHS COVID-19 testing site opened its doors to students and staff. Located in the Main Gym Lobby, the AWHS COVID-19 testing site aids administration in tracking COVID-19 cases at AWHS, caused by the recent emergence of the Omicron variant in Marin County. 

Using data from the schools under its jurisdiction, the Tamalpais Union High School District (TUHSD)  reports that 74 AWHS students tested positive so far in January, a dramatic increase from 39 AWHS students testing positive in the whole month of December 2021. The district reports that 1176 students at AWHS were vaccinated as of Jan. 10, with 101 students unvaccinated. Thus, AWHS has a 92.09 percent vaccination rate.

On the site’s opening day, students and staff didn’t know how many people would line up to test. AWHS senior, Dexter Hixton, visited the testing site on Jan. 10. 

“There was about a one-hour wait because the site had ran out of tests, other than that it efficiently and effectively tested students,” Dexter said.

AWHS junior, Ashleigh Farnsworth, also visited the testing on Jan. 10 and again on Jan. 13.

“[On Jan. 10] I got there around 7:45 and didn’t get tested until around 8:30, even though there were only seven people ahead of me. Wednesday was a lot better…it only took me around 20 minutes to get tested,” Ashleigh said. 

To get tested, students must have a temperature of 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or below, without the use of fever-dampening medication 24 hours prior to testing. Students who test positive for COVID-19 on their fifth day of quarantining may return to AWHS on their seventh day to be retested. Names of those who test positive will be protected by the testing facility.

 

There was about a one-hour wait because the site had ran out of tests, other than that it efficiently and effectively tested students,”

— Dexter Hixton

Primary Health – which provides a platform for mass testing and vaccination while also providing analytics for COVID-19 rates in specific populations –  is implemented at AWHS to report test results to the school and Marin County Health Department. Students must be registered for Primary Health before getting tested and will receive their test results through text or email to minimize contact. 

Open Monday through Friday, students and staff utilize the COVID- 19 testing site at AWHS. With a 7:45 am opening time, AWHS continues to offer fifteen-minute instant tests for those in need.