COVID-19 Testing Program for K-12 Schools (2022-2023 School Year)

Georgia's ELC Reopening Schools program is designed to support safe, in-person instruction in kindergarten through grade 12 (K-12) schools. The program is funded through a grant from the CDC and administered by the Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH). The program was designed with input from the Georgia Department of Education and is based on CDC guidelines and recommendations.

Along with staying up to date on vaccinations, handwashing, improving ventilation, and other strategies for everyday operations, COVID-19 testing is an additional strategy schools can use to keep students and staff safe.

DPH has secured turn-key labs to perform testing at participating schools. The DPH contracted labs will deploy resources (personnel, equipment, and supplies) to perform testing at the schools who enroll in the program. 

In addition to onsite turn-key lab vendor testing, schools can choose to augment their COVID-19 testing strategy with the distribution of Over-The-Counter (OTC), rapid COVID-19 tests.  Schools can choose to only participate in the distribution of OTC COVID-19 tests if they choose that option. Schools may also choose to allow for testing of family members of faculty, staff, and students.

For K-12 schools participating in DPH coordinated turn-key lab testing and/or OTC test distribution, DPH will also be offering COVID-19 mitigation support through the provision of high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters to add to existing systems or portable HEPA filters.  A tiered strategy will be implemented to provide HEPA filtration to priority locations within participating schools with portable HEPA filtration units provided for classrooms as funding allows.

For more information or to contact our program, please email [email protected]

  • DPH Guidance and Resources for Schools and School Districts

    Current DPH Administrative Orders, Isolation Guidance, Quarantine Guidance:

    Here are some resources that schools and school districts may find very helpful when implementing the ELC Reopening Schools Program.


    • Frequently Asked Questions

      Q: Is this mandatory for school districts/schools?
      A: No, this is an opt-in program for school districts/schools.

      Q: If a district/school opts-in, can students/parents opt-out?
      A: Yes. This is an opt-in program for the schools and the students - it is the parents' choice to opt-in or not.

      Q:  Are schools required to sign an agreement of any sort with DPH?
      A:  Yes, DPH requires that schools sign a memorandum of understanding before participating in turn-key COVID-19 testing, OTC test receipt, or COVID-19 mitigation support.

      Q:  If my school or district participated in the DPH K-12 Testing program during the 2021-2022 school year, do we have to sign another agreement with DPH?
      A:  Yes, the MOU schools signed for the 2021-2022 school year expires on July 31, 2022.  All schools participating in COVID-19 testing with DPH will need to sign a new MOU for the 2022-2023 school year.

      Q: Will the schools be required to pay for the turn-key testing solution?
      A: No, DPH has secured contracts for this.

      Q:  Will schools be required to pay for the OTC COVID tests?
      A:  No, DPH will provide the OTC COVID tests for participating schools.

      Q: Can a school that opts-in leave the program if the transmission levels fall below the recommended level for screening?
      A: Yes. The school chooses when the testing will occur.

      Q: Can a school opt-in to both athletics and school testing?
      A: Yes. Keep in mind, the athletics testing is only for high schools.

      Q: Can vaccinated individuals participate?
      A: Vaccinated individuals may participate in the program.

      Q: Our school district has chosen to not enroll, but our school would like to enroll - is this acceptable?
      A: Yes, please see below on how to enroll (
      if your district allows the school to participate even though the whole district is not participating in the program)

    • How does our school or school district enroll for the 2022-2023 school year?

      In order to enroll, you will need to email the following to [email protected]:

      • Name of Educational Entity (name of school district or school if not a public school district)
      • Primary Contact (First Name, Last Name, Email, Phone Number)

      You will be then be contacted by our staff to complete the enrollment process.


    • Important Dates for 2021-2022 School Year
      • Last day testing can occur = July 31, 2022
      • All ClassWallet funds must be used by August 12, 2022
    • Important Dates for 2022-2023 School Year
      • Deadline to enroll in the program with DPH = May 1, 2023
      • Last day testing can occur = July 31, 2023

      *DPH will not be allocating ClassWallet funds during the 2022-2023 school year.