LAUSD waivers requirements on COVID testing and other protocols

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LOS ANGELES (KABC) — When children return to their classrooms in Los Angeles Unified School District within two weeks, they will find a new set of COVID-19 protocols being scaled back from the 2021-22 school year.

The district sent a note to parents on Tuesday detailing new procedures that bring LAUSD more in line with Los Angeles County guidelines. Previously, LAUSD had set standards for testing, vaccination and other procedures that were stricter than in many other school districts.

Weekly asymptomatic testing for COVID-19 is no longer necessary this year, a change the district made at the start of summer classes in June.

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Instead, testing is only required for those who experience symptoms of COVID-19 or have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive.

Vaccination is not mandatory for students, but it is for neighborhood employees.

At one point, the district planned to mandate vaccination for students starting this fall. But the school board voted back in May to postpone that mandate, and it hasn’t been brought back since. Instead, the district encourages but does not require students to be vaccinated.

“Our staff are already vaccinated. We encourage all eligible students to be vaccinated as well, and all members of the school community to receive any boosters they qualify for,” the district wrote.

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Last year, students had to use the Daily Pass system to enter campus every day, verifying that they were aware of the COVID-19 testing and showed no signs of illness. That is no longer a requirement to enter a school campus and the day pass is only used to upload test results and vaccination data, monitor positive cases and notify close contacts if a person has tested positive.

The district also outlined improved policies for cleaning and disinfecting classrooms and campuses. The district says it has spent millions of dollars upgrading ventilation systems and filters, as well as purchasing electrostatic disinfection units and deploying new air scrubbers. All “high-touch surfaces” are disinfected twice a day.

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The district’s policy on masking is that coverings are “highly recommended” for indoor school areas and workplaces, and schools will have surgical masks available upon request.

More information on LAUSD protocols for COVID-19 is available here.

The video in the media player above is from an earlier report.

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