Mayor Kevin Faulconer, Superintendent Cindy Marten, and San Diego Education Association President Kisha Borden have sent a letter urging Gov. Gavin Newsom to focus on COVID-19 testing in schools.
“We are calling for the governor to dedicate the sizable COVID-19 testing resources under his control toward promoting a safe and healthy environment for students and teachers," Faulconer said. "There is little more important than the education and mental wellbeing of our kids, so we have an obligation to reopen classrooms to in-person learning and close the growing educational and economic inequities in our communities.”
The San Diego leaders called robust testing, tracking, and tracing essential to reopening schools across the city. The Newsom Administration is considering plans to distribute more than 150,000 daily tests secured under a contract with PerkinElmer.
“We can prevent 90 percent of all COVID-19 cases on campus with a robust testing program,” Marten said. “The San Diego Unified School District has been working with scientists from UC San Diego to plan for a safe reopening.”
In August, the State of California announced a plan to double the state’s testing capacity, which included a contract for 150,000 daily COVID-19 test kits with a turnaround of 24 to 48 hours. San Diego Unified and local leaders calling for 10,000 of the daily tests to be included in a robust local program to allow for the testing of every student and staff member, every other week.
"Our educators are eager to get back into the classroom as soon as it is safe to do so, and the key to that is a systemic testing, tracking and tracing program," said Borden, who represents some 6,000 teachers as president of SDEA.