for people ages 18 years and up (full criteria)
Healthy Volunteers
healthy people welcome
study started
estimated completion
Principal Investigator
by Rebecca Fielding-Miller (ucsd)
Headshot of Rebecca Fielding-Miller
Rebecca Fielding-Miller



Schools serve important community roles beyond academic education. In historically marginalized communities they are trusted providers for a range of support services for families in need. The tradeoff between these crucial benefits of in-person learning against the risk of SARS-CoV-2 transmission in school settings has been hotly debated throughout much of 2020 and 2021. The stakes are particularly high in historically marginalized communities which rely most heavily on school services, but have also been hit the hardest by COVID-19 primarily due to structural issues. The Safer at School Early Alert (SASEA) program was co-developed by the University of California, San Diego, the County of San Diego, and 15 partner schools serving socially vulnerable students in 5 school districts across San Diego County. SASEA utilizes daily wastewater and surface (floor) environmental monitoring to detect asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infections among students and staff on campus. Positive environmental signals are immediately followed by targeted responsive testing for a whole school (in the case of wastewater) or classroom (for a positive surface sample). In this project, we will develop the Safer at School Early Alert HUB (SASEA HUB), an online school environmental monitoring report dashboard with resources to address structural barriers to COVID-19 diagnostic testing in historically marginalized communities (Aim 1). We will also create a toolkit to allow any school to rapidly adapt the template to their specific setting. In Aims 2 and 3, we will use a randomized stepped wedge trial to compare SASEA (control) vs SASEA HUB (intervention) in 26 schools across 3 diverse school clusters in San Diego County. Our primary outcome (Aim 2) is higher rates of diagnostic testing in intervention schools. Our secondary outcome (Aim 3) is increased risk mitigation behaviors in school community members when environmental surveillance data suggests a potential case on campus. In Aim 4, we will use parent-child narrative interviews with 40 parent-student pairs to understand how children perceive COVID-19 risk at school, assess differences in perceptions of testing barriers between intervention and control sites, and better understand how children understand the process of environmental surveillance and responsive testing.




You can join if…

Open to people ages 18 years and up

  • Individuals ages 18 and above affiliated with students attending the 3 school districts participating in the SASEA study

You CAN'T join if...

  • Children under the age of 18


  • University of California, San Diego accepting new patients
    San Diego California 92093 United States

Lead Scientist at University of California Health

  • Rebecca Fielding-Miller (ucsd)
    My research examines structural drivers of infectious disease and gender-based violence in the United States and sub-Saharan Africa with a focus on the intersection of race, gender, and economic inequality. I served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in South Africa from 2006-2008 and as a Fulbright Scholar in Swaziland in 2013-2014.


accepting new patients
Start Date
Completion Date
University of California, San Diego
Study Type
Expecting 1200 study participants
Last Updated