You are reading

Mayor and Schools Chancellor Announce New COVID-19 Case Rule for School Closures

(Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)

April 8, 2021 By Allie Griffin

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced sweeping changes to the city’s COVID-19 closure policies for New York City public schools.

The city has doubled the number of coronavirus cases that requires the Department of Education to close a school for 10 days.

Beginning Monday, schools will close for in-person instruction if four or more cases of the coronavirus are detected among students or staff within one week, de Blasio announced Thursday.

The cases must also be found in different classrooms and must have been contracted inside the school.

“Fewer closures mean consistency and stability for students, staff, families and more days in classrooms for New York City’s children,” Schools Chancellor Meisha Ross Porter said at the mayor’s press briefing.

Previously, two unlinked cases among students and staff within one week triggered a 10-day closure of an entire building — which could mean multiple schools within the same building were shuttered. The new rule will close only the school where there are four or more cases were found, not the entire building.

“We’ve seen the studies, consulted with medical experts and based this change on guidance from the CDC,” Porter said. “We’ve heard the voices of our school communities calling for increased stability around in-person learning as long as we can do so safely.”

If a school closes, all students will be switched to remote learning until it reopens in 10 days.

If two or three cases of COVID-19 are confirmed in different classrooms, the city will double the amount of random weekly testing from its baseline of 20 percent of staff and students to 40 percent of staff and students, Porter said.

One confirmed case within a class will still warrant a closure of that individual classroom for 10 days, she added.

Parents with children who are enrolled in full remote learning have until Friday to decide to send their kids back to the classroom for the remainder of the school year. It is the last opportunity for parents to enroll the children in the city’s blended learning model, in which students attend class in-person on some days and remotely on other days.

Parents who wish to enroll their children in the hybrid model can do so by calling 311 or visiting nycenet.edu/surveys/learningpreference.

email the author: [email protected]
No comments yet

Leave a Comment
Reply to this Comment

All comments are subject to moderation before being posted.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Recent News

Long Island City teen sentenced in fatal shooting of ‘beloved’ school teacher at Queensbridge Houses in 2020: DA

A Long Island City man on Friday, Jan. 28, was sentenced to 19 years in prison for the 2020 fatal shooting of a public school social studies teacher who was out walking his dog when he was caught in the crossfire during a confrontation between gang rivals in broad daylight, just blocks from his home, according to Queens District Attorney’s office.

Ike Ford, 19, of 12th Street, in Long Island City, pleaded guilty to manslaughter in the first degree before Queens Supreme Court Justice Kenneth Holder. The teacher, George Rosa, 53, was shot in his abdomen by a stray bullet fired by Ford, who was just 17 years old at the time of the shooting but was sentenced as an adult given the severity of the crime, according to Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz.

LaGuardia Community College receives federal funding to expand vocational training for the unemployed

LaGuardia Community College recently received more than $400,000 in federal funding to enhance and expand vocational training for underemployed New Yorkers in a city that is still working to recover from COVID-19 pandemic-induced job loss. The support was secured by U.S. Senators Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand, Congresswoman Nydia Velázquez and former Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney.

LaGuardia Community College President Kenneth Adams explained that the school lost nearly a quarter of its students at the height of the pandemic due to the economic effects of the lockdown on low-income Queens households.

BP launches new advisory panel for youth to become civically engaged in the future of Queens

In an effort to get more young people involved in civics, Queens Borough President Donovan Richards has created a new advisory panel known as the Youth and Young Adult Council to introduce the “youngest and fiercest” community advocates to both community service and organization.

Members of the advisory body will advocate concerns through means of community engagement by participating in one of two cohorts. The first will be made up of high school representatives between the ages of 13 and 17, while the second cohort will be comprised of young adults between the ages of 18 and 25.

These Queens eateries are participating in the upcoming NYC Restaurant Week

NYC Restaurant Week is underway, so nix that skillet and bring family and friends to your favorite neighborhood spot, or get inspired and break bread somewhere new and different. During this special citywide culinary event, food-lovers will enjoy curated menus and prix-fixe prices that are easy on the wallet.

Bookings began on Jan. 17 and are available until Feb. 12, and you can reserve a table at 30 participating Queens restaurants, along with hundreds more across the five boroughs.