The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

Biden administration to distribute additional COVID-19 tests to schools

On Wednesday, the Biden-Harris administration announced a plan to administer free COVID-19 tests to schools beginning in early December, according to a press release by the U.S. Department of Education. 

The plan is part of a newly formed partnership between the Department of Education and the Administration for Strategic Preparedness and Response, a division within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. 

The partnership will allow school districts and local education agencies to order COVID-19 vaccines directly from the federal government. 

The press release states, “The tests will be made freely available to all traditional and charter (local education agencies) nationwide.”

The announced plan is similar to other programs by the ASPR, which send free COVID-19 vaccines to households and community centers.

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Over 1.6 billion COVID-19 tests have been distributed directly to households, schools, long-term care facilities, community health centers and food banks through these channels,” the press release added.

The Department of Education encourages school districts to distribute the vaccines throughout the community in an effort to keep schools open throughout the winter months. 

“School districts may distribute these tests for free to students, staff, parents and school communities, with the expectation that millions of tests will be sent out in the coming months — allowing schools to stock nurses’ offices, distribute at events, send tests home with students or parents and more,” the press release said. 

The plan is also part of wider efforts by the administration to increase COVID-19 testing throughout the country.

“The Biden-Harris Administration remains a committed partner with schools in keeping our students and teachers safe and healthy,” said Roberto Rodriguez, assistant secretary for planning, evaluation and policy development at the Department of Education. 

 

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