Mass schools face COVID test delays

Before the start of the 2021-22 school year, Boston Public Schools officials hailed frequent pool testing for COVID-19 as one of the main mitigation strategies they planned to use to minimize the spread of the virus.

Now, nearly a month into the semester, nurses at BPS schools said the testing program contracted by the state has been lacking, leaving some students untested and the to-do lists of already-busy school nurses more packed than ever.

Going into the school year, BPS nurses weren’t expecting to have to run pool testing. Instead, that responsibility was supposed to fall to staff from CIC Health, a Cambridge-based company that started during the pandemic. CIC Health was contracted by the state Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) to provide pool testing to districts across the state.

According to the district, under an agreement with the Boston Teachers Union (BTU) — which includes school nurses


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