FREMONT (CBS SF) -- Frustrated parents in Fremont said the school district's plan to distribute COVID-19 test kits Wednesday was a poorly planned disaster that left them standing in long lines for hours on end.
"As much as I appreciate Fremont Unified School District for distributing these kits, I think they should have planned much better," says parent Nesi Ozbeck.
Double masked, Ozbeck waited in a long line of parents who ditched their cars and walked to the district headquarters to collect their tests.
Ozbeck said she's concerned that despite the district's best intentions they may have inadvertently created a super-spreader event by bringing so many people to a single location.
"Considering how Omicron is very contagious, you can even contract Omicron waiting in this line. I have a double mask -- a N95 and a surgical mask over it -- and I'm concerned waiting in this long line," she told KPIX 5.
The superintendent said the district was trying to slow the spread of the Omicron variant by distributing test kits before classes resumed next Monday. He apologized for any inconvenience experienced by families.
"We regret that any of our students or staff have had to wait an extended period of time. We are committed to making sure that they get these tests delivered to them," said Superintendent C.J. Cammack.
Public health officials say it may be time to considering regular, ongoing testing at all schools.
"At the end of the day the more testing that you do, the more you can keep the people who are diseased away from the people who are not diseased. So, testing is power. The question really is capacity," said Dr. Peter Chin Hong, a UCSF Infectious Disease Specialist.
Capacity and adequate planning would be key components of increased testing. The test giveaway in Fremont ended at two o'clock, even with dozens of parents still waiting in their cars to receive their tests. They were instructed to return Thursday.
UPDATE: The district released a letter to KPIX 5 Wednesday night apologizing for the delays.
Thank you to everyone who participated in our drive-thru distribution of at-home COVID-19 test kits today. We still have enough supply to serve the students/staff who have not yet picked up their voluntary testing kits.FUSD regrets and takes responsibility for not having a more efficient process for distribution. I apologize that our staff and families waited longer than was reasonable, and for the inconvenience this caused our families, staff and neighbors in the Fremont community. We thank you for the patience and understanding you showed our staff who did an amazing job under demanding circumstances. In an effort to better serve our community, we are increasing locations for tomorrow's scheduled distribution, January 6 from 10am to 2pm. Please visit one of the locations listed below to pick up a test kit for any FUSD student/staff member that has not already received a test:
- American High School, 36300 Fremont Boulevard
- Irvington High School, 41800 Blacow Road
- Fremont Adult and Continuing Education, 4700 Calaveras Avenue
Please note: Student/Staff member does not need to be present, but student name(s) may need to be verified in our student information system before tests will be distributed.We kindly request that you not enter the distribution location prior to 10am. If you are not able to arrive in a vehicle, we will have a walk-up location available. We respectfully ask that if possible, you drive to the event and remain in your vehicle and go through the drive through distribution process. This will help us manage our traffic flow and distribution process.
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