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Anchorage schools rolling out new COVID-19 testing sites

Kia Hasson places a sample into a collection box at a drive-through COVID-19 testing site operated by Visit Healthcare on Friday, Oct. 2, 2020 at the Loussac Library in Anchorage. (Loren Holmes / ADN)

Update, Jan. 14: The Anchorage School District will offer testing at Tyson Elementary instead of Fairview Elementary as one of its five walk-up COVID-19 testing sites that offer results in 24 hours for staff and students.

The Anchorage School District is standing up COVID-19 testing sites in partnership with the Anchorage Health Department.

There will be pop-up testing in parking lots at 11 schools on a scheduled basis. The testing is free and for the general public. It will be offered from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. at the following locations on the following days:

• Jan. 8, Abbott Loop Elementary School

• Jan. 9, North Star Elementary School

• Jan. 11, Central Middle School

• Jan. 15, Nunaka Valley Elementary School

• Jan. 16, Williwaw Elementary School

• Jan. 18, Alaska Native Charter School

• Jan. 22, Ptarmigan Elementary School

• Jan. 23, Creekside Park Elementary School

• Jan. 25, Airport Heights Elementary School

• Jan. 29, Tyson Elementary School

• Jan. 30, Lake Hood Elementary School

Starting Jan. 19, walk-up testing sites for school district staff and symptomatic students, with results in 24 hours, will be available at the following elementary schools:

• Chester Valley Elementary School

• Abbott Loop Elementary School

• North Star Elementary School

• Russian Jack Elementary School

• Tyson Elementary School

Testing will also be available for symptomatic staff and students at the following school health centers:

• Bartlett High School

• Begich Middle School

• Clark Middle School

• East High School

The district also has two rapid test machines that it can use to test symptomatic students when parents are unable to get the student to a regular testing site, according to Anchorage School District Healthcare Services Director Jennifer Patronas.

All students and staff who are going back to in-person school this month should get tested next week, even if they are not symptomatic, Patronas said. Students and staff can go to any established municipal testing site.

“That way before they return to face-to-face learning on the 19th, they know whether or not they’re positive,” Patronas said. “It will give a little peace of mind to not only the staff but also to the families and the students.”

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