Students weigh in on COVID surveillance testing at school

Published: Sep. 29, 2021 at 5:17 PM EDT
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SHELBURNE, Vt. (WCAX) - This is week four of surveillance testing for students in Vermont.

The Lake Champlain Waldorf School in Shelburne has enrolled in Operation Expanded Testing. The school says they are the first in the state to do so.

“I have been pleasantly surprised by how easy the tests have been administered,” said Jasper Oliver, the front office manager and first- and second-grade assistant.

Oliver swabs students’ nostrils for weekly surveillance testing.

All 185 students 5 and up and staff are required to take part.

“Time-consuming but positive,” Oliver said.

Positively negative that is-- so far, all tests have come back negative.

The school tells me the PCR tests are administered and sent out on Wednesday. The results come back as soon as Thursday night or Friday morning.

Oliver says all schools should take part in surveillance testing.

“Adult fears around testing are greater than children’s fear,” he said.

The kids are proof. Fourth-grader Arielle Greenblatt says all schools should test students.

“It reassures kids, knowing if they have or have not had contact, or have or have not had the virus,” she said.

She has even become used to being tested.

“At school, it feels normal, when I get tested from home it doesn’t,” Greenblatt said.

“It feels weird and like there are little parts of the Q-tip still in my nose,” said Arianna Beringer, a third-grader.

Even though Beringer isn’t a fan of the test, she’s happy she has it done.

“Then if I have COVID, I’ll know and if I don’t, I’ll know,” she said.

Tuesday, the state introduced multiple methods for testing students.

Oliver says to parents questioning whether their child should take part --

To parents questioning whether their child should take part, Oliver said: “If you care-- which you obviously do parents about your child’s safety-- then we need to take this seriously. It’s a quick test.”

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Vermont ramps up vaccination efforts; ‘test to stay’ program to keep more kids in school

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