Regulated Child Care COVID-19 Tests For Tots Program

14 January 2022

We want to take an opportunity to thank you for the continued services you provide the community and Vermont’s children and families. We understand the multitude of challenges you face daily and appreciate the unwavering commitment you have and continue to make to our children, families, and community. 

We have heard from many providers that the Tests for Tots program is a welcome relief to the challenges that COVID-19 presents at this time in the pandemic. We have also heard from many providers that they have concerns about how the program is designed. This is a voluntary program, and we understand that not everyone will opt-in; that is ok. 

You can now find the Frequently Asked Questions related to the program on our website. We hope they answer your questions and help you decide if participation in Tests for Tots is right for your program.

Tests for Tots was designed with two goals in mind. 

  1. To provide testing opportunities for children 2 – 5 years old who are currently not eligible for vaccination so they may remain in their child care setting. 
  2. To provide testing opportunities for staff who are not fully vaccinated to continue working so programs can remain open.

Tests for Tots is an evidence-based strategy developed with the experts at the Vermont Department of Health. Child care providers must follow the program design if they choose to participate to ensure that, alongside testing, other mitigation strategies are in place. 


A Few More Updates

  • The Tests for Tots program design has been updated based on your feedback and guidance from the Vermont Department of Health.
  • The deadline for submission of Intent to Participate forms will be extended to Monday, January 17, 2022, at 5 pm. Please review our Test Kits Pickup Instructions.  
  • We found out today that we may be able to dedicate some KN95 masks to child care programs. If we are able to distribute, we will be sending two per staff member in next Thursday’s (January 20th) Tests for Tots pick up. We will then devise a plan to distribute the rest of the masks to all regulated child care programs, regardless of their participation in Tests for Tots.
  • An optional opt-in letter for families has been created and can be found on our website.

Questions

  • Information on COVID-19 symptoms, defining close contacts, quarantine, etc., can be found on the Vermont Department of Health website. For questions about that information, please contact the Vermont Department of Health at 802-863-7240 (toll-free at 833-722-0860). Staff at the Child Development Division are not experts in COVID-19 and cannot answer questions of this nature.
  • Questions related to test kit supply, reorders, and distribution can be directed to testfortots@vermont.gov.