Covid Surveillance Testing at BFA


A Covid test swab. Photo credit: Lyla Rouleau

Georgia Casavant, Writer

COVID surveillance testing is well underway at the Maple Run Unified School District.  Theresa Callan, Executive Assistant to Bellows Free Academy’s Principal Brett Blanchard, said that, at BFA, staff testing began on Sept. 20 and student testing on Sept. 27. 

According to Maple Run Unified Superintendent, Bill Kimball, the school district uses the “PCR” test.

At Bellows Free Academy, testing happens every Monday during class periods 1-4. The school district also supplies PCR tests, which can be brought home. 

Kimball strongly urges community members to get tested if they have any concerns. “If anyone’s feeling any anxiety or anxiousness over where they’re at, take a test,” Kimball said.

According to Kimball, there is a higher percentage of students in the K-8 schools getting tested than in the high school. Kimball described the surveillance testing as a matter of “human resources.”

Kimball shared that currently, Governor Phil Scott is looking into a new testing system (called “Test to Stay”) that focuses its attention on students who are ineligible to be vaccinated. This protocol would use the antigen test, which would allow for a student or staff member to test in the morning and return to their regular routine because of the 15 minute turnaround time. 

When asked about the current PCR test process and its timeliness, Jasmine Duncan (‘23) said, “I usually get my results by Wednesday morning. [For testing,] I go in [to the testing space in the cafeteria], blow my nose and swab my nose for 15 seconds [on each side].” 

If someone is looking for more information on Covid or testing, be sure to reach out to health professionals and always remember to stay up-to-date with CDC guidelines