Covid testing to become available at Lawton Public Schools
LAWTON, Okla. (KSWO) - Optional COVID-19 testing will be offered to students and staff at Lawton Public Schools, starting this upcoming Monday.
The State Department of Education and Health offered school districts grants to create a testing protocol for their district.
The $500,000 grant LPS was awarded, will be used to test 10 percent of the districts population once a month.
“We will not test any students without parent consent,” Superintendent Kevin Hime said. “Obviously it’s got to have all of those FERPA guidelines, and things like that, that goes with it. It’s really going to be a service. We are not going to try to infringe or are we going to tell anybody that they have to get tested, an employee or student at our testing site.”
A part of the grant money will also help take care of school nurses which is who will be administering the tests.
“Our nurses were doing a lot of contract tracing, and a lot of work in the COVID and this would help pay their salary. We actually hired another one,” Hime said.
Parents will also be given the option to allow their kids to be tested randomly at any given time.
“The state wants us to get 10 percent as a part of the grant and to do that we have to give parents the option to test students. It will be interesting to see what percentage of parents will allow that because it’s kind of become a political issue, should I get tested, should I not,” Hime said.
He said this comes at a perfect time as Christmas break is approaching.
He believes if parents allow their kids to get tested and staff do their part, it could prevent a future spike in cases.
“That’s the goal. A lot of people say it can. Obviously, we have talked about it that one of the things that we’ve think helped us is our parents doing a great job of keeping their kids who are sick, home,” Hime added.
Testing will be available by appointment and walk-ins at designated school sites that can be found on the Lawton Public Schools website.
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