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Division of Public Health encourages student testing post-spring break

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Spring break for most of Delaware’s K to 12 schools is this week -- and The Division of Public Health and the Department of Education are strongly encouraging students to get tested before returning.

The recommendation comes with a goal of keeping students and teachers safe, while also helping to keep schools in-person for the rest of the school year.

Michael Colletta, Chief Physician with Delaware Public Health, says there are many reasons testing is necessary.

“We’re starting to see a slight uptick in cases in the Northeast. And as restrictions are being lifted and this is a holiday where families are going to be gathering, possibly in close quarters, it's possible that you may get an additional increase in positive cases," explained Colletta. "So we’re encouraging families and students to get tested prior to returning to school so that we can mitigate the spread.”

With many Delawareans visiting family this week, and with COVID mandates and restrictions being lifted, Colletta says a COVID surge following the holiday weekend is possible.

“It’s certainly possible. We’ve seen other surges following holiday weekends. Hopefully with the warm weather people will be spending their Easters outside, and that can help decrease the amount of possible spread. But it’s really too early to know.”

The best way for students to know their status is to get tested the day before returning to school.

DPH distributed approximately 190,000 over the counter test kits to Delaware schools this month. Some schools may keep them for in-school testing, while others may distribute them to families to help students test before returning to school.

COVID testing sites can be found by visiting de.gov/gettested.

DPH also notes that spring break is a great time for students and families to schedule vaccination or booster appointments.

Quinn Kirkpatrick was born and raised in Wilmington, Delaware and a graduated of the University of Delaware. She joined Delaware Public Media in June 2021