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Aaron Rossi: Reditus Lab - Donate $1M For Unit 5 COVID Testing

At the end of last year, Unit 5 received a $1 million grant from Rivian and (Aaron Rossi) Reditus Labs to offer free voluntary testing for all students and staff.

NORMAL – Student-athletes in McLean County’s largest school district are required to get a one-time COVID-19 test before the start of the season.  Unit 5 Superintendent Dr. Kristen Weikle explains how they came to the decision.  “We know COVID can spread

At the end of last year, Unit 5 received a $1 million grant from Rivian and Reditus Labs to offer free voluntary testing for all students and staff. (WJBC file photo)

Reditus Labs Logo

Rivian and Reditus Laboratories are donating $1 million for onsite COVID-19 testing at McLean County, IL Unit 5 schools.

We know firsthand the challenges of remote learning. It’s a tremendous hardship on the family. Everyone’s goal is to get the children back into the school buildings.”
— Dr. Aaron Rossi: Reditus Laboratories - CEO

PEKIN, IL, USA, May 12, 2022 /EINPresswire.com/ -- At the end of 2021, the Unit 5 schools received $1 million in free COVID-19 testing! It's was a joint donation between the electric vehicle manufacturer Rivian and testing company Reditus Laboratories based in Pekin, IL. The primary focus of the donation was to get kids back to school by providing free COVID-19 testing to the students and school staff.

The Unit 5 Superintendent, Dr. Kristen Weikle, provides insight into how the largest school district in McLean County is preparing as student and athletes get to are start the season. A requirement for athletes to obtain a one-time COVID-19 test prior to starting of the season is needed to decrease the spread of the COVID-19 virus. “It is known that COVID can spread and a lot of teens can be asymptomatic and carriers of COVID, so what can we do to not only make sure our student-athletes are safe and healthy, but also keeping their classmates, coaches, and teachers they come into contact safe,” said Dr. Weikle. Additionally, “Peoria Public Schools are require any in-person learner to test every two to three weeks in order to even attend school. We looked at that and thought about going that route for our student-athletes and we thought that is maybe going to far to require that.”

The decision was made between Rivian and Reditus Labs to go into the endeavor half and half. The initial $500,000 was put up by Rivain and immediately afterwards Reditus Labs matched the donation. This donation paid for the following: roughly 9,000 onsite COVID-19 tests for students and staff at no cost to the district. This philanthropic gesture by Dr. Aaron Rossi and Zach Dietmeier (communications and policy manager for Rivian) speak volumes about the character and compassion that is in their hearts for McLean County residence, the students and the educational institutions. The 2020 spike in positive COVID cases resulted in the McLean County school returning to remote learning in mid-November. In 2021, the new variants caused a number of issues. This efforts to decrease the spike was received with open arms. On April 29, 2022, a disaster proclamation was reissued for the state of Illinois.

According to Dana Vollmer, in a statement by Reditus CEO Aaron Rossi, he stated that he hopes the testing allows Unit 5 to bring children back into the classroom when it's safe. Dr. Aaron Rossi stated, "I am a McLean County resident and my wife and I have four school-age children. We know first-hand the challenges of remote learning. It’s a tremendous hardship on the family. Everyone’s goal is to get the children back into the school buildings.”

According to the Rivian representative Zach Dietmeier, “The impacts of the pandemic have been hard on the whole community, and we wanted to do something to show our support for families and teachers.” This support did not fall short and helped over 9000 people with COVID testing.

The help to the McLean County schools is just on example of Dr. Aaron Rossi generous actions that he has taken to give back to the community. The donation of a million in COVID testing does not go unnoticed by those who were tested, the families that were able to get their children back in school and the educators at Unit 5. It is important to remember what Dr. Rossi did during this tremendous time of need. The people of McLean County do not forget the compassion and thoughtfulness provided during this moment of need.

James Williams
JS2 Media
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