All Tacoma Public School students will receive a box containing two iHealth COVID-19 antigen rapid tests. These tests are intended to support the health and safety of our community by providing results at home, as soon as symptoms are detected.
A positive result from an iHealth test can be used to calculate a student’s isolation period and determine when then can return to school. Students who test positive for COVID-19 must isolate at home for at least five full days, regardless of their vaccination status. They can return when the following criteria are met:
- 5 full days since symptom onset, or the positive test sample was collected; and
- No symptoms are present, or symptoms are improving; and
- No fever without the use of fever-reducing medications within 24 hours of returning.
However, iHealth is not a lab-verified test, so it can’t be used to shorten the quarantine period of someone who is identified as a close contact to a COVID-positive person. TPS is working with health authorities for updated guidance on this topic.
All staff will receive iHealth tests as well.
The tests are voluntary and will go home with students on Tuesday, Jan. 25. Elementary students will receive tests from their primary teacher. Middle and high school students will receive tests in the last class of the day. High school students who are not on campus during the last scheduled period can pick up a box at the front office.
Parents of elementary students can opt out of receiving tests by contacting their child’s teacher. Parents of secondary students can opt out by contacting the school’s front office or allowing their child to decline it.
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About Tacoma Schools
Tacoma Public Schools is the only district designated an Innovation Zone by Washington State. A leader in implementing innovative schools and programs to meet the diverse needs of every student, every day, TPS serves approximately 30,000 students from preschool to grade 12 and at nearly 5000 employees is one of the largest employers in Tacoma. Learn more...