MEDWAY — Superintendent Armand Pires is pleased to announce that Medway Public Schools received a donation of COVID-19 tests for faculty and staff.
Medway faculty and staff were able to take a test on a voluntary basis Tuesday, which was the district’s scheduled professional development day.
The testing initiative is part of a back to school testing program for K-12 teachers and staff in Massachusetts, supported by a coordinated donation through Immune Observatory. The Program provides one-time, baseline testing services from Concentric by Ginkgo Bioworks, Inc. The Medway School Committee on Thursday, Oct. 22 approved the one-time COVID-19 tests for faculty and staff.
As part of the program, Concentric by Ginkgo provided all of the necessary testing supplies, as well as arranged all necessary logistics, at no cost to the district. The tests, which are self-administered saliva tests, were provided to employees following their completion of a health questionnaire. Testing was overseen by an on-site test supervisor and district employees Dr. Ryan Sherman, Ellen Quinn, Jessica Sinclair, Karen Downing and Katherine Bird assisted with the sample collection yesterday.
“We know that testing is an important measure in stopping the spread of COVID-19, especially as cases are rising again across the state,” Superintendent Pires said. “Widespread COVID-19 testing is expensive, so we are thankful for this donation that allowed us to make one-time testing available to our faculty and staff.”
The expected turnaround time to receive results is approximately 2-3 days. Results will be provided to the test taker, district and public health authorities in line with state and federal laws. District employees who receive a positive test will then follow the district’s COVID-19 protocols.
This baseline testing program is in addition to the district-wide COVID-19 testing program for all students and staff that the district is currently exploring.
About Immune Observatory
The Immune Observatory is a non-profit 501(c)3 organization dedicated to expanding access to testing in Massachusetts and more broadly. We make a particular effort to reach out to schools in lower income districts, but everyone is eligible to participate in this program. Allocation of available testing is based on when applications are received, as well as on our assessment of how the testing can best support the reopening of schools. Our advisory panel includes doctors, public health professionals, and testing experts.
About Concentric by Ginkgo
Concentric provides an end-to-end testing service where saliva samples can be taken on-site. We use minimally invasive collection methods to promote testing in large communities of individuals within businesses and educational institutions.
Concentric is powered by Ginkgo Bioworks, a synthetic biology company in Boston.