Crystal Lake Elementary District 47 offering free COVID-19 tests for students, families

Updated 4/27/2021 3:23 PM

Crystal Lake Elementary School District 47 students and their families can now get free COVID-19 tests through the district.

"We're pleased to provide another layer to our mitigation strategy, which we hope will reduce and prevent the spread of COVID-19 in our schools and community," Superintendent Kathy Hinz said in a letter to families posted on the district's website.


Through a partnership with Rapid Control and Medstar Laboratories, COVID-RT PCR test kits can be picked up by District 47 students, staff, and families mornings Monday through Friday at the district's administrative offices, the CORE Center at 300 Commerce Drive in Crystal Lake.

Reverse Transcription Polymerase Chain Reaction, or RT PCR, test whether someone is currently infected with the virus that causes COVID-19. The PCR test is the "gold standard" test for diagnosing COVID-19 because it's the most accurate and reliable test, according to the Cleveland Clinic.

No appointments are necessary, Hinz said in the letter, as tests can be taken at home and dropped off at the CORE Center. Instructions for how to administer the test, which is taken as a nasal or throat swab, are provided in the kit.

Medstar will collect the completed tests and analyze them. Results would be emailed within 48 hours.

As of Tuesday afternoon, the total number of positive cases among District 47 students attending school in person is 136, while the total number of staff who have tested positive is 61, according to the district's COVID-19 dashboard.

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A total of 2,046 of in-person students have had to quarantine, while 298 in-person staff have.

District 47 is also providing on-site BinaxNow COVID-19 tests to staff with the help of the Illinois Department of Public Health and the McHenry County Department of Health.

The BinaxNow test helps detect certain proteins that are part of the COVID-19 virus. District 47 staff can make an appointment for the Binax test through the mobile app Navica.

However, unlike the COVID-RT PCR tests, these are not available to students through the district.

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