Oakland Unified Says Mass Testing Over Holidays Finds Practically 1,000 Circumstances Amongst Employees and College students – CBS San Francisco

OAKLAND (CBS SF) – Oakland Unified School District officials credited a COVID-19 mass test over the holidays to find nearly 1,000 cases in students and staff before classes resumed Monday.

OUSD officials said they heard 985 positive tests between New Years Eve and the start of classes. Of the positive tests, 920 were students and staff, while another 65 were family members or others in the community.

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“Although we know the Omicron variant is spreading across the country, we are pleased that this testing scheme is working as we hoped it would and keeping sick people at home,” Superintendent Kyla Johnson-Trammell said in a statement on Tuesday. “The high number of tests performed and the results reported show that people in our community are looking after their health and the health of everyone around them.”

Much of the testing was done through 41,000 home tests sent to families before and during the winter break. Home testing submitted 21,000 results to the county’s COVID-19 case tracking system, of which 472 were positive, giving a 2.2% positivity rate.

OUSD officials believe the actual number of home tests performed was much higher and say many families with negative results did not upload them.

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Along with the home tests, the district conducted tests at school locations during the holidays. The district also held a special testing clinic at Fremont High School on Sunday and distributed 350 additional home tests.

Officials said that 74 positive cases were found during the Sunday clinic.

OUSD also reports that 269 teachers were reported absent on Monday, many of them related to COVID-19. The group emphasized being prepared for a large number of absenteeism, reacting with deputies and deploying head office staff if necessary.

“We’ve seen high numbers of employee absences, but they remain manageable,” said Johnson-Trammell.

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OUSD said they expect “high levels of absenteeism” to continue this week and possibly into next week.

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