News Flash: ‘Boogers down’: Biden’s bid to reopen schools may hinge on ‘pooled’ testing

Pooling can play a large role in the Biden administration's plan to reopen schools

March 29, 2021

The image depicts the Politico article headline "'Boogers down': Biden’s bid to reopen schools may hinge on ‘pooled’ testing" with the words "new flash" emblazoned above it

We were thrilled to see the “Boogers down!” phrase coined by our pilot participant show up in Politico’s recent article on the Biden administration’s efforts to reopen schools:

“A growing number of the nation’s school districts are experimenting with a Covid-19 testing regime they hope will get millions of children back into their classroom — if they can keep up with the price tag.

The Biden administration’s $1.9 trillion Covid relief law is steering $10 billion toward developing a national school coronavirus testing strategy as its latest bid to reopen schools. That plan is still in flux but some attention has turned to the practice of “pooled” testing that uses a collection of swabs from a fixed group of kids attending classes together. The process is meant to limit the spread of a potential outbreak while minimizing the costs of the frequent large-scale testing needed to keep the disease in check.

Besides pooling’s ability to lower costs, we also shared our feelings with Politico that a testing program should be easy for schools to do during their day-to-day school schedule:

‘If you want to get something to work in K-12, you need to minimize the disruption to the school day,” Ginkgo Bioworks CEO Jason Kelly…said in interview. ‘You need to make it possible for staff that’s already at the school to do it without needing to bring in a whole new health care provider staff that doesn’t exist at that scale at every school in the country…’

You can read the full article here.

Speak with our team to learn more and join our community of schools today.

Our classroom pooled testing service tests 25 people using one test. It’s specifically designed to be fast and easy for students and help schools test their community repeatedly and easily. School leaders should consult appropriate federal and state guidelines to determine funding eligibility and appropriate testing programs.