Department of Public Health - COVID-19 testing
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health conducts Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test for COVID-19 on March 19, 2020. Photo courtesy Los Angeles County.

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Long Beach Unified announced Friday that it is suspending COVID-19 testing of students for a week, which the district had committed to for the first three weeks of school.

Superintendent Jill Baker did not say specifically why the testing program would pause for now, but said the district would analyze its data in consultation with health officials in the city before devising a plan for the rest of the fall semester.

She also noted the district’s low positivity rate in the first three weeks of school.

“At this point, we have conducted approximately 60,000 tests resulting in a positivity rate of less than 1%,” Baker wrote. “This low rate is a testament to the hard work families, students, and staff have put in over the last few weeks.”

The citywide positivity rate for COVID-19 is now 2.4%.

To date, 484 students have tested positive, according to district data, although full results from the third week of testing are not yet available. Another 25 employees have also tested positive, and one outside vendor or visitor.

Editor’s note: This story has been updated to include additional information on how long the testing pause would take place.