Why should students test? Because the entire community’s health is connected!

August 04 2022

Taking COVID-19 tests does more than tell us whether we’re infected. Everyone’s health—families, friends, classmates, neighbors, and so on—is connected. Testing helps manage COVID-19 risks for everybody! 

Testing creates a “weather map” for COVID-19 risks

Meteorologists don’t predict the forecast by looking at the sky. They collect and interpret data from networks of radars and satellites monitoring the atmosphere. Testing in a program like ours, where a school or community tracks the results, works kind of like that. It gathers the data needed to help build a “weather map” that public health officials and communities can use to assess COVID-19 risks. 

Every reported result enhances the “map.” The more results schools have, the better they are at recognizing when a “storm” might roll through. If there are signs of an outbreak on the horizon, schools can make decisions designed to protect everyone’s health.

An animation of a map of the globe, with potential COVID-19 outbreaks being detected and intercepted thanks to testing.

Adding to the “weather map” is easy. Just join your school’s testing program and sign up for the self-reporting feature on our parent/guardian portal. There, you can securely upload results of the tests your child takes at home, in a doctor’s office, or anywhere else.

Knowledge is power when it comes to COVID-19

Testing isn’t about being fearful of COVID-19. Just the opposite! Testing is about empowerment. It allows families to take ownership of their health and play a positive role in the community.

Even when someone feels fine, testing ahead of social events, large gatherings, and after traveling is a great way to put others first. Remember, keeping transmissions down is as much about the vulnerable people around us as it is about our own health. Sitting out a big event isn’t always fun, but forget the FOMO. Focus on FOCO (fighting off community outbreaks) instead!

3 things to remember about testing

  1. It’s quick. Pooled testing in a classroom can be done in minutes, and rapid antigen tests (the kind you take at home) only take about 15 minutes.
  2. It’s simple. Our test and many rapid antigen at-home tests are done with short, easy-to-use swabs.
  3. It’s helping your community. Every recorded result provides critical information that schools and communities use to plan for potential COVID-19 risks.

A single test won’t end the pandemic. However, it is a strong first line of defense. Just like an immune system works to detect, intercept, and respond to threats, testing and other precautions can act as an immune system for your entire community.

For more information on signing up, contact your school!