New York City schools closing because of rising covid-19 rates

New York City schools closing because of rising covid-19 rates

The briefing started about an hour before New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) announced that the public schools would shut down.

Browning, Nightingale-Bamford, Collegiate, Spence, and Trinity are among the independent schools in Manhattan that said they will hold in-person classes Thursday.

De Blasio agreed with parents and teachers months ago to set the 3% rate that forces a temporary halt to the largest USA school system's blended program of classroom and remote instruction.

Cuomo said New York City could be declared an "orange zone" once it touched three percent, also triggering the shutdown of indoor dining and gyms.

NYC Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza conceded as much this week when he noted in an email to principals that testing in school had produced a 0.19% positivity rate, which he called a "reassuring sign that our schools are safe". And in fact, a revision of earlier city data showed it had likely been above that threshold since November 11. As of the end of October, only about 25% of students had gone to class in school this fall, far fewer than officials had expected.

This came as parents across the city expressed concern over the closures, calling on the governor to leave schools open.

At the time, the seven-day positive test average rate was under 2%.

Even as the school system stayed open, more than 1,000 classrooms went through temporary closures after students or staffers tested positive, and officials began instituting local shutdowns in neighborhoods where coronavirus cases were rising rapidly. "Or unless the governor instructs independent schools to close".

Levine added, "We should be prioritizing reopening for elementary school students and students with special needs because we know that there's a pedagogical cost and a social-emotional cost to online learning". There are more than 140 members of the Independent School Admission Association of Greater New York, which includes early childhood education programs.

Even as the school system stayed open, almost 1,500 classrooms went through temporary closures after students or staffers tested positive, and officials began instituting local shutdowns in neighbourhoods where coronavirus cases were rising rapidly. "And what it all boils down to is, today in New York City a kid cannot learn in their classroom but they can have a meal at indoor dining".

As of midweek, more than 2,300 students or staff at public schools had tested positive since the start of the school year. De Blasio has set a metric of 3% for school closures as part of the partial re-opening plan in the fall, as he faced significant pressure from the powerful teachers union, which had threatened to strike. The Democrat argued that students needed services they got in school and that many parents were counting on it in order to get back to work.

The city agreed to changes, including hiring thousands more teachers and testing 10% to 20% of all students and staffers per month for the virus.

"Those restrictions are coming", the mayor warned.

"This number just keeps growing and this worries me a lot", said de Blasio, noting the city's 550-case threshold.

"If I had to predict, you're going to see a significant spike post-Thanksgiving", Cuomo said. "No, you won't be safe".

New York's 1,800 public schools were first closed on March 15 when the city became the early epicentre of America's virus outbreak.



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