In a new partnership with Covid Clinic, the Winters Joint Unified School District is offering rapid antigen testing to students, families, staff and community members in Winters. The efforts launched on Wednesday, Jan. 5.
Covid Clinic is a not-for-profit testing provider that currently offers on-site COVID testing in school districts throughout the state and across the nation. It is as no cost to individuals who use its services.
Winters JUSD had previously had a partnership with Healthy Yolo Together. However, the grant that funded the testing ended on Dec. 30.
All testing is voluntary and individuals who choose to participate in testing through Covid Clinic will need to register. Any prior registrations or waivers signed for last year’s testing are not applicable. Jenny Pinedo, Director of Special Education & Student Services, told the Express individuals will only need to complete the waiver and registration process once.
There are links available on the Winters JUSD website to register ahead of time; however, devices will be available at the testing site and support for those needing it will be provided.
Pinedo said registering ahead of coming to the testing site helps make the process run smoother.
“That being said, if someone needing testing cannot or does not have the technology available to register ahead of time, COVID Clinic staff will have devices available and the ability to help anyone with registration as needed. And, (we) will have both English speaking and Spanish Speaking staff available at all testing locations,” Pinedo said.
A new offering in this COVID testing program is asymptomatic on-site testing for students at Waggoner Elementary, Shirley Rominger Intermediate, Winters Middle School and Winters High School during the school day. Students will not be tested without a parent or guardian’s consent.
Pinedo said two testing methods are available: using a nasal swab or a saliva sample.
Asymptomatic testing will be offered on an ongoing basis to the community and school staff and families. This includes testing for close contacts and athletes. Symptomatic testing will also be offered at the Winters JUSD Office Building and the Winters Community Library locations.
Pinedo said the new guidance is a student who tests positive and they opt-in to take a test on Day five, and it is negative and symptoms are improving, may return to school on a modified quarantine beginning Day six through Day 10.
Students who choose not to test, would continue to complete their quarantine at home for the full 10 days as was previously being practiced.
The new testing schedule is as follows:
Student & family testing
Waggoner from 8:30 a.m.–11:30 a.m.
WMS from 12:30 p.m.–3:30 p.m.
Rominger from 8:45 a.m.–11:30 a.m.
WHS from 12:30 p.m.–3:30 p.m.
Two locations are available for community testing.
Winters JUSD Office (909 W Grant Ave.)
Monday, Wednesday, Friday from 1p.m.–3 p.m.
Winters Community Library (708 Railroad Ave.)
Tuesday, Thursday 1 p.m.–6:30 p.m.
Winters librarian Ashleigh Torres announced through social media post on Tuesday that the COVID Clinic testing at the Winters library location would be cancelled on Wednesday. Torres said testing would resume at the Winters JUSD district office on Thursday, Jan. 13 at 1 p.m.
The Express is reaching out to Winters JUSD to find out if the Winters library testing location will be reopening.
How to register
There are two separate links to register based on if the individual is a community member or a Winters JUSD student, family or staff member. They can be found on the Winters JUSD website on the COVID-19 testing page.
There are also QR codes for easy scanning from a smartphone or device.
Students, families and staff: https://school.covidclinic.org/
Community members: https://www.covidclinic.org/winters-joint-unified-school-district/
Winters schools have seen a rise in the number of students and staff members both testing positive and being identified as a close contact since returning to school on Jan. 5. In total for the month of January (as of publication) there were 35 positive student cases, 274 close contact student cases, 18 positive staff cases and 25 close contact staff cases.
Since school began in August 2021, the total numbers are 58 positive student cases, 726 close contact student cases, 38 positive staff cases and 54 close contact staff cases.
The breakdown of site-by-site for the month of January identified positive cases in students is: Winters State Preschool Center – One, Career Readiness Academy at Wolfskill – Zero, Waggoner – 13, Rominger – Eight, WMS – Five, WHS – Eight.
The number of identified close contact cases in students is: Preschool – Zero, CRA – Zero, Waggoner – 46, Rominger – 12, WMS – 87, WHS – 129
For a detailed breakdown of positive cases and close contacts in staff members by school site and by department at the Winters JUSD office building, visit the Winters JUSD COVID-19 dashboard on the Winters JUSD website on the COVID-19 page.