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Winnipeg School Division to turn 2 gymnasiums into COVID-19 test sites for staff

The Winnipeg School Division will soon be using the gymnasiums in Grant Park High School and Tec Voc High School as COVID-19 testing sites for unvaccinated staff. Matt Purchase / Global News

The Winnipeg School Division will soon be using the gymnasiums in two of its schools as COVID-19 testing sites for unvaccinated staff.

A notice posted to the division’s website says unvaccinated staff will be able to attend Grant Park High School and Tec Voc High School for testing during non-working hours.

It says the locations were chosen because people won’t have to walk through the building to get to the gyms.

The testing clinics are going to be set up and taken down each day, followed by cleaning and fogging.

Read more: COVID-19: Manitoba schools getting ready to test unvaccinated staff as mandate deadline nears

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In an email to Global News, a division spokesperson says they aren’t anticipating the loss of any programs, however, “some alternative arrangements may be made where needed.”

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“Testing is being done only in the evenings and Saturdays, so full use of gyms continues for students,” they write.

The division’s notice says tests will be done three times a week, and one of the tests must be observed by a neutral third party. It says it has hired a contract health-care service for the observed test.

“Those staff who choose to take weekly testing have the option to provide proof of full vaccination at any time, which would mean they no longer require weekly testing,” the statement concludes.

Beginning Monday, public health orders will require school staff, licensed child care workers, child and family service personnel, health-care workers, and civil servants who deal directly with vulnerable persons to present their employers with proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test every 48 hours.

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