HomeSchools & YouthSMUSD Holding Its Own in COVID Battle

SMUSD Holding Its Own in COVID Battle

First published in the Jan. 27 print issue of the San Marino Tribune.

Attendance at the San Marino Unified School District continues to hover at about 92% during the more than three weeks that have transpired since the end of winter break.
Students from the district’s four school campuses returned to classes on Monday, Jan. 3, following a two-week holiday break and attendance has remained steady, according to Assistant Superintendent Stephen Choi.
The SMUSD has also implemented several robust COVID-19 testing programs, including weekly polymerase chain reaction [PCR] testing to all students, employees and on-site volunteers. All school sites offer rapid antigen testing to any student or employee who may develop symptoms during the school day, with results communicated in as little as 15 minutes. All school sites now also provide self-tests to students and staff who have been identified as a close contact or were previously infected and need to test negative on Day 5 in order to return back to school.
The SMUSD uses a combination of PCR and rapid antigen tests administered by COVID support and health staff, as well as self-tests. The average percentage of positive tests as of last week registered at about 4.5%, according to Superintendent Linda de la Torre.
As of Tuesday morning, San Marino High School had four active cases of COVID-19 and Huntington Middle School had five.
Approximately 96% of all SMUSD employees are fully vaccinated and 87% of the district’s students are fully vaccinated. About 81.7% of the students at San Marino’s two elementary schools are fully vaccinated as of this week, according to de la Torre.
Choi reported that all classrooms in the district also have portable air purifiers.
“We are incredibly proud of the countless hours and incredible dedication by our School District,” said Nam Jack, president of the San Marino School Board. “They are doing their utmost for the benefit of all our students based on state and local mandates.”


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