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Durham Public Schools partnering with Greenlight Durham for COVID-19 Support

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Representatives from Greenlight Durham, a Duke University initiative aimed at providing COVID-19 support to keep businesses and organizations open, spoke about the new partnership with Durham Public Schools during Thursday night’s board meeting. The hope is that through the partnership, the district can better engage community members and work towards getting students and staff safely back on campus. 

For DPS families, the Greenlight Program proposes to engage and provide important information regarding COVID-19 and testing within the district and community. The partnership will support: 

  • Connecting Durham Public Schools families to community resources, including community health workers and social support programs 
  • Rapid antigen testing for DPS athletic programs 
  • Build capabilities and capacity to test for COVID-19 within school environments 
  • Increase confidence with families and staff for school environments to launch clinical programs 
  • Vaccine hesitancy and adoption survey 
  • Readiness assessment of DPS staff for vaccine adoption and dissemination 
  • Inform communication strategy to drive vaccination programs 
  • Vaccine town halls and small group meetings 
  • Community town halls led by diverse experts in English and Spanish 
  • Small group meetings to surface and discuss concerns


“We believe through the school system we can inform people to prevent vaccine hesitancy,” said Dr. Mark Sendak, a clinical data scientist at Duke University. “Many schools are seeing that it is the most vulnerable families that are not able to participate in on-site learning even when the classroom is reopened. There are many families where children live in multi-generational households and the parents have to make the tough decision to keep kids home because they don’t want to get grandparents sick. DPS is positioned to reach a wide audience and we really want to reach families. We think if we are successful with this, we can help pave the way to on-campus learning.” 
 
“I am so excited for this partnership,” said Natalie Beyer, DPS board member. “I am very excited to hear about the focus on equity and am hoping that as we go forward, we can start testing and using the app and other tools in our learning centers and learn from that for our reopening plans.” 
Greenlight Durham uses technology to help connect staff members with testing, provide access to community services – including COVID-19 relief payments – and provide information on vaccine availability. 

To view the full presentation that was presented to DPS board members, click here.