Van Alstyne Schools To Use High-Tech Fever Screener

From ABC10

VAN ALSTYNE, Texas (KTEN) -- Many school districts are planning to check student temperatures before they enter the building as one defense against the coronavirus. While most are relying on the screening to be done at home by a parent or guardian, one Texoma school district is taking matters into their own hands.

Van Alstyne Independent School District is leaning on new technology to help keep their students safe and healthy when they return to campus. Anyone entering the building will walk past a contact-free temperature scan that looks somewhat like a security camera.

"It's done in real time; we are not recording anything," said Partin Elementary School Principal Krisit Odom. "We're not capturing, we're just capturing faces -- it's not tied to a name or anything like that."

A system like this helps ease the process of checking every student manually. In less than one second, temperatures can be scanned. Van Alstyne school administrators say the device can scan four to six students at one time.

Odom said a staffer will monitor the scans every day, watching for green and red boxes on the screen. A green box shows a student has a normal temperature and is cleared to go to class.

A student will have a red box around their face if a temperature above 100 degrees is sensed. At that point, he or she will be sent to the school nurse for a second temperature check. The nurse will either send the student back to class or back home.

"We know we are not going to catch every single kid; this is not a COVID-19 detector, we know that," Odom said. "We think it's really important to stop kiddos that have a fever who are contagious from getting into the general population really quickly. It helps us to make sure the kids who are here and are feeling well, stay well."

VAISD says taking extra precautions like this could help schools remain open and safe this fall.

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