(Eureka) – The Humboldt County Office of Education (HCOE) has partnered with the State of California to make COVID-19 surveillance testing available for educators in our county who are providing in-person learning and instructional support. The partnership utilizes the State of California, Valencia Branch Laboratory for processing of self-administered tests. The additional testing of educators is aimed at keeping students and staff safe in the classroom.
“This method of self-testing provides a reliable and convenient format districts can utilize for regular surveillance testing of staff. This is a sound prevention strategy and extra layer of protection for students and staff that can help to minimize exposure of COVID-19 on school campuses,” according to Humboldt County Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Chris Hartley. “We are excited to partner with Valencia Labs to increase the capacity for testing educators and are extremely appreciative of all who have worked hard to collaborate and bring this initiative to reality,” Hartley said.
In addition, Humboldt County Public Health Officer, Dr. Ian Hoffman said, “Ongoing surveillance testing will ensure that we can keep our kids and staff in schools, reduce likelihood of shutdowns by catching cases early before they spread, and keep the larger society open and in less restrictive tiers. Additionally it can help us monitor for increase disease activity if we start to see variants of concern increasing in Humboldt County.”
HCOE’s Katie Cavanagh, Director of Special Education added, “HCOE’s drive through testing is modeled after local and state examples in an effort to be accessible and hassle-free”.
Comprehensive COVID-19 information is available on the HCOE website, including information for educators and can be accessed at https://hcoe.org/covid-19/