New Rapid Testing Program ASD-W

Article Posted: Monday, October 11, 2021

Dear Anglophone West School District Families,

I’m sending this message today to provide you with more details regarding the new rapid testing program for students, which will be rolled out this coming week. I also wish to let you know that we have reorganized responsibilities within the district due to the efforts required to respond to Covid-19. Our Director of Schools for the Woodstock area, Mr. Jay Colpitts, is now acting as our ASD-W Director of Covid-19. Therefore, in the future, messages may come from him or me.


Last week we shared information from the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development about a new Covid-19 rapid testing program available to unvaccinated students if there is a confirmed case at a school. This program allows unvaccinated students who have been identified as a close contact to potentially return to school before the end of their isolation period.


This program will begin province-wide the week of October 12, 2021, and will be offered when there is a confirmed case within the school.


If a school has a confirmed Covid-19 case, all students identified as close contacts will be provided with a letter from Public Health with information about self-isolation or self-monitoring. This has been the process since the beginning of the school year. Now, in addition to this, if a student is is unvaccinated, parents will also receive information regarding the rapid test program and how their child can participate. It is important to note that this program is only available to unvaccinated students identified as close contacts.

If a student is participating in rapid testing, parents will be notified where and when to pick up their test kits. This will either be at the school or at a location specified by the school.

Students using the rapid tests will be required to self-isolate for 24 hours unless otherwise advised by Public Health. Within that time frame, rapid testing at home will begin. If a student produces two consecutive negative rapid tests in 24 hours and has no symptoms, they can return to school the following day with their negative tests. Negative tests are to be brought back to school and shown to the school’s assigned personnel.

Students will be required to continue taking the rapid tests each day before school for the duration of their original isolation period. In addition, each day, negative tests will need to be brought to school and shown to the school’s assigned personnel.

If a student receives a positive COVID-19 rapid test result or displays ONE symptom, they must stay at home and contact Public Health.

Students who do not participate in the program will be required to stay home and self-isolate for the entire length of isolating time determined by Public Health.

School is incredibly important for the overall wellbeing of our students - not only for learning but for their mental and physical health. We hope that this program will allow students to experience fewer disruptions to schooling and help slow the spread of COVID-19 in our schools and community.

We thank you for your support throughout this process.

David McTimoney, Superintendent​​