Update: Click here to access more information and an FAQ about COVID testing for employees.
I’m pleased to share that DPS is partnering with Denver-based Gary Community Investments to provide access to free COVID-19 testing and support to all of Team DPS as we work to safely and gradually welcome all students back into schools, when health conditions allow.
COVIDCheck Colorado is a social-benefit enterprise of Gary Community Investments, and our partnership will provide all staff access to fast and accurate COVID-19 testing, symptom tracking, and tools to support public health department contact-tracing efforts.
Beginning the week of Aug. 10, DPS will provide all asymptomatic employees who are school-based or working in-person access to schedule COVID-19 diagnostic testing at various COVIDCheck drive-through sites. Testing is available to all school-based employees and those working in person, and we recommend staff use this opportunity to get tested up to two weeks before returning to their worksite. All full-time and part-time team members will be able to get tested roughly every two weeks, this may be adjusted based on results of tests and prevalence of COVID in the community. Team members showing symptoms of COVID-19 are encouraged to seek advice from their medical provider.
Throughout the COVID-19 crisis, our overriding priority has been and will continue to be the health and safety of our students and staff. We are committed to providing the safest environment possible for the DPS community. The COVID-19 testing, combined with symptom-tracking tools, will help us manage potential outbreaks before they start and quickly provide support to anyone who tests positive for the virus.
COVIDCheck Colorado’s integrated approach provides staff with the ability to schedule an appointment for a COVID-19 test at a designated DPS site or any COVIDCheck site in the metro area, with test results expected back in 72 hours or less. Staff members who test positive for the virus will receive a phone call from a tele-health provider who will guide them on best practices to help prevent the spread to anyone else. As required by law, all positive cases will be reported to local public health agencies and the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. Those who have been exposed to the virus will be notified in accordance with the state’s contact-tracing procedures and health-privacy practices. Any asymptomatic educator who wants to be tested can do so roughly every two weeks.
COVIDCheck Colorado also offers a mobile-friendly website that can be used by employees to schedule testing. And, once we return to in-person learning, team members as well as families of students will also have access to a similar site to track and report symptoms every morning before they get to work and school. If an individual has symptoms, the tool may recommend that they not come to school and provide them with suggested next steps, including getting tested right away and quarantining until negative results return. Designated DPS team members will have access to a HIPAA-compliant dashboard displaying the district’s test results and symptom data to help stop potential outbreaks before they start. Please note, the symptom-tracking tool allows individuals to anonymously report symptoms, and the dashboard will only report the prevalence of those symptoms in a particular school. It will not reveal the identity of any individual who reported the symptoms, and DPS will not track or take action on symptoms, only on positive test results.
We will share additional information soon about the COVIDCheck testing sites and hours, as well as more information about how to sign up for testing and answers to common questions. If you have any immediate questions, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for your work and dedication on behalf of our students and families. And I hope you’re having a safe and healthy summer.