The district acknowledges that “at-home rapid tests” serve as a useful tool towards identifying positive coronavirus individuals, especially as we brace ourselves for a predicted surge in Omicron variant cases. Please be mindful that the Food and Drug Administration recently announced that some antigen tests may not be as sensitive to the Omicron variant - "Early data suggests that antigen tests do detect the Omicron variant but may have reduced sensitivity." 

At home Covid-19 tests sacrifice some accuracy for speedy results, but they can be an aid for making decisions and knowing when to seek guidance from your healthcare provider on testing, treatment, isolation, quarantine, and school exclusion. 

The most accurate tests available continue to be the polymerase chain reaction tests, or PCR testswhich detect tiny snippets of the virus’s genetic material. Rapid tests, on the other hand, detect molecules that are found on the virus’s surface, called antigen and are most accurate when a person has symptoms. Most experts agree that people get positive antigen results when they’re most contagious.

The Ramapo Indian Hills Regional High School District will accept positive test results from an “at home test” (a photo submission is recommended) and/or a COVID-19 diagnosis from a qualified physician for communicable disease reporting purposes, but in order to ensure that our school district is utilizing the reduced quarantine with testing option under the most stringent testing guidelines, the PCR “gold standard” test will be the only test result accepted for readmittance to school.