LAUSD orders mandatory COVID testing for students, staff ahead of school return

( Mayra Beltran Vasquez / Los Angeles County )

FOLLOWING the latest surge in COVID-19 cases and the omicron variant, the United States’ second largest school district is ordering students and staff to get tested before they return from winter break.

The Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) announced on Monday, January 3 that K-12 students and staff must be tested, regardless of vaccination status, before the spring semester begins on Tuesday, January 11.

All students and employees will be required to have proof of a negative COVID-19 test in order to come onto campus on January 11.

Families are encouraged to upload the external PCR or antigen tests, or at-home tests onto the student’s Daily Pass account no later than Sunday January 9.

“As students return to the classroom, we all need to follow the public health safety measures in place to ensure our schools can open safely after the winter break,” Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer said in the release. “Because higher community transmission creates additional challenges at our schools, everyone needs to do their part to slow the spread of the virus.”

For information on testing centers and to make a COVID-19 test appointment at a Los Angeles Unified site, please visit or call the Family Help Desk at (213) 443-1300. While appointments are encouraged, no appointment is needed for Los Angeles Unified COVID-19 tests. For a link of operating hours by testing site, please visit

COVID-19 at-home rapid self-tests are available for K-12 students. Students can pick up a free at-home COVID-19 rapid self-tests on Friday, January 7 and Saturday, January 8 from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. at any of the district’s 63 Grab & Go sites. Each student may receive two self-tests. Please visit for a map of pickup locations.

Weekly testing will continue for all students and employees through the month of January.

Masking will be required at all times, indoors and outdoors. Students 12 and older will be required to be vaccinated by the fall 2022 semester. (AJPress) 

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