Pupils, wearing face masks, listen to their teacher during a summer project at the primary school Sonnenschule in Beckum, western Germany, on July 6, 2021. (Ina Fassbender – AFP / Getty Images)
Jack Davis July 31, 2021 at 1:29pm
The Los Angeles Unified School District wants every single student and school employee to undergo weekly coronavirus testing as a condition of returning to in-person learning.
The district, which is the nation’s second-largest, previously said that vaccinated individuals would not need testing.
However, LAUSD on Thursday told parents and workers that it would be implementing mandatory COVID-19 testing, starting next week.
“All students and employees, both vaccinated and unvaccinated, returning for in-person instruction must participate in baseline and ongoing weekly COVID testing. This is in accordance with the most recent guidance from the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health. Baseline testing begins on Monday, August 2,” the district announced in a statement on its website.
In the statement to parents and employees, Interim Superintendent Megan Reilly said as conditions change, so will the rules.
“We are closely monitoring evolving health conditions and adapting our response in preparation for our full return to in-person learning on August 16,” Reilly said.
The union president of United Teachers Los Angeles, Cecily Myart-Cruz, backed Reilly, according to the Los Angeles Times.
“Vaccines are like seatbelts: necessary but not invincible,” Myart-Cruz said. “Just like we need seatbelts, airbags, and speed limits, we need masks, ventilation, and testing to keep school communities safe.”
The Times quoted one parent as having a negative reaction to the announcement, however.
Is this really necessary?
“As a parent, it is my responsibility to keep them healthy and safe, I do not need the district to poke and prod my healthy children unnecessarily. This mitigation strategy they claim to be of the highest standard is severely overreaching,” a west San Fernando Valley parent said.
The Times withheld the parent’s name, saying she “requested anonymity out of concern that her child could be targeted for criticizing the district.”
LA Unified is going to torture students, vaxxed or not, if they dare to show up for in person schooling. Defund public schools. https://t.co/1mSMxUdCZz
— Salty Cracker (@SaltyCracker9) July 30, 2021
LA County Public Schools will REQUIRE ALL K-12 students to wear Masks AND get a COVID Test once a week. Absurd, the test are evasive and unwarranted. NO Science to back this requirement.
— Sparky (@mark_gowings) July 30, 2021
So in Europe, when kids test negative for covid for a camp or school, they are allowed to attend without a mask! In LA, vaxed and covid-tested kids still have to mask up and social distance! This is just too much. #maskchoice
— Isabella Bodnar (@IsabellaBodnar) July 27, 2021
Reilly also said in the statement that schools will require all students and employees to wear masks on school grounds and social distance as much as possible.
One expert said testing must include vaccinated people due to the spread of the Delta variant of the virus, according to The New York Times.
“The evidence is mounting that vaccinated individuals can be part of transmission chains,” said Dr. Anne Rimoin, professor of epidemiology at the Fielding School of Public Health at the University of California, Los Angeles. “Any testing regimen that does not include vaccinated individuals is going to be incomplete and leave people at risk.”