ST. PAUL (LEARFIELD)  —   Governor Tim Walz says the state is providing free COVID-19 saliva tests for Minnesota teachers, school staff, and child care providers.

There will be more than 250-thousand total tests at a cost of six-million dollars.

Walz said, “those educating and caring for Minnesota’s next generation deserve the peace of mind that these COVID-19 tests will provide.”

The state Department of Education sent unique codes for saliva tests to schools to distribute to all staff and the Department of Human Services provides codes to licensed child cares.

Officials say the goal is to create safe in-person learning for as many children as possible.