Free, On-Campus COVID-19 Testing Begins at Green Level


A. Clark

Eric Cooper (GLHS social studies teacher) is tested by a MAKO Medical staff member.

Beginning on January 27, Green Level High School is now offering free, weekly COVID-19 testing every Thursday from 6:45-9:15 AM in Room 0131. Although participation in the program is voluntary, all students and staff are encouraged to participate. The district-wide initiative is in partnership with MAKO Medical in order to increase student and staff access to COVID-19 testing and identify asymptomatic cases. If you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, then stay home and follow WCPSS guidelines for returning back to school.

Free, weekly on-campus testing within the Wake County Public School System began in November and will soon be available in all WCPSS schools to students and staff. 

Darren Williams, the Green Level COVID-19 Coordinator, explains, “For nearly two years, we’ve been hard at work, attempting to maintain a safe, healthy school environment in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. Regular testing is the latest part of that effort.” Research supported by the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services found that weekly testing of all students, teachers, and staff can reduce in-school infections by an estimated 50%.

Pooled testing will be used every week, where respiratory samples from six people will be combined when tested. The process will work similarly to similarly to a regular test. Trained MAKO Medical staff will quickly and gently swab students’ noses and place multiple swabs in a single tube to be tested as a single sample. Results will be available 24 hours or less via text message or email, and will also be reported to Green Level. If the test comes out as positive, those whose samples were included in the “pool” will return the following day to take individual tests in order to identify the positive COVID-19 case(s) (this is called deconvultion). If the pooled result comes back negative, then all samples are also presumed as negative. This method began around the early days of HIV and allows labs to test more samples with fewer materials, while monitoring a relatively large population with a small amount of positive cases.

Eric Cooper, a social studies teacher at Green Level, described his positive experience with the first day of testing, “The testing is easy and not invasive. I have had some horrible experiences with testing, but the MAKO test was not bad at all.” He also notes how he was originally spending near $75 per week on at-home antigen tests, so this new initiative is much more cost-effective. 

Due to testing imperfections, there are still chances for inaccurate results (false positive or false negative), so if you show or develop symptoms it is still recommended for you to isolate and contact your healthcare provider.

Use this link to register if you are a student (or the parent/guardian of a student under 18):

Use this link to register if you are a staff member:

If you are under 18, your parent or guardian must register for you. Williams explains, “Once registered, there is no obligation to get tested every week. If you forget to show up one week, or only choose to get tested every few weeks, no problem at all.”


If you have any additional questions or concerns, email Darren Williams ([email protected]) or Karah Bullins ([email protected]).