Letter to Parents – Rapid Antigen Test Kits

To All CDSBEO Parents/Guardians and Staff,


To help slow the spread of COVID-19, reduce absenteeism, and to continue to support our school communities, the Catholic District School Board of Eastern Ontario is pleased to offer rapid antigen test kits for symptomatic students and staff.

In alignment with the updated testing guidance from Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, individuals may use rapid antigen tests if they are experiencing symptoms compatible with COVID-19.

The test kit provided to you contains two rapid antigen tests. This testing option is voluntary for students, and staff. If a symptomatic individual chooses not to participate, they are presumed positive and should isolate immediately and follow updated testing guidance: Interim Guidance for Schools and Child Care Omicron Surge.

Please read the information below carefully, if choosing to participate.


When to Use a Take-home Rapid Antigen Screening Kit:

  • For individuals choosing to participate in this testing option, they must display symptoms commonly associated with COVID-19. As outlined in the updated guidance (COVID-19 Reference Document for Symptoms), this includes:
    • Fever and/or chills; OR
    • Cough; OR
    • Shortness of breath; OR
    • Decrease or loss of taste or smell, OR
    • Two or more of:
      • runny nose/nasal congestion
      • headache
      • extreme fatigue
      • sore throat
      • muscle aches/joint pain
      • gastrointestinal symptoms (i.e. vomiting or diarrhea)

 

  • Symptomatic individuals must complete the rapid antigen tests at home.

 

  • If the first RAT test is positive, there is no need to use the second test. A positive RAT is highly indicative that the individual has COVID-19. A positive RAT does NOT need to be confirmed with a PCR test. Positive RAT tests do NOT need to be reported to the public health unit, school or childcare.

 

  • If the first RAT test is negative, complete the second test separated by 24-48 hours.

Using the Take-home Rapid Antigen Screening Kit:

There are 3 different varieties of rapid antigen tests that are being distributed by the province. Please see the links below for instructions on how to use each variety:

  1. BTXN Rapid Response™: How to use the BTNX Kit
  2. SD Biosensor: How to use the SD Biosensor Kit
  3. Trimedic FaStep®: How to use the FaStep Kit

You may also reference this How to Video:

Important note: Parents/guardians should assist younger children in administering the RAT test.


What to do after your test:

 

  • You will know the outcome of the test within 15 minutes.

 

  • If the first rapid antigen test is positive, there is no need to use the second test. A positive rapid antigen test is highly indicative that the individual has COVID-19. Positive rapid antigen tests do NOT need to be reported to the public health unit, school or childcare.

 

  • If the first rapid antigen test is negative, complete the second test within 24-48 hours of the first test. If two consecutive rapid antigen tests, separated by 24-48 hours, are both negative, the symptomatic individual is less likely to have COVID-19 infection, and the individual should isolate until symptoms are improving for at least 24 hours (or 48 hours if gastrointestinal symptoms are present), prior to reporting to work/school.

 

  • If the individual who tests positive is fully vaccinated or 11 years of age or younger, they must self-isolate for at least 5 days from symptom onset and until their symptoms have been improving for 24 hours (or 48 hours if gastrointestinal symptoms), whichever is longer in duration.

 

  • If the individual who tests positive is 12 years of age or older and is either partially vaccinated or unvaccinated, they must self-isolate for 10 days from symptom onset or from the date of their test (whichever came sooner).

 

  • If the individual who tests positive is immune compromised (regardless of age and vaccination status) they must self-isolate for 10 days from the onset of symptoms, or from the date of their test (whichever came sooner).
    • If symptoms persist / worsen, individuals are encouraged to seek advice from Telehealth or their health care provider.
      • Please note: in alignment with updated testing guidance, there is no confirmatory PCR test required if an individual tests positive. For more information about what to do if you receive a positive test results, please following the guidance found at: Interim Guidance for Schools and Child Care Omicron Surge.

For the latest updates on COVID-19 from the CDSBEO visit our COVID-19 Information page at https://www.cdsbeo.on.ca/students-parents/novel-coronavirus/