Governor Cuomo has just announced the long-awaited decision regarding opening New York schools this fall.
He said that since all regions are below the 5% COVID-19 positivity rate currently, schools in NYS are allowed to reopen come September. According to the New York Times, most regions in NYS have been hovering around a 1% positivity rate.
Every region is well below our COVID infection limit, therefore all school districts are authorized to open.
If the infection rate spikes, the guidance will change accordingly.
School districts are required to submit plans to NYS for review.
— Andrew Cuomo (@NYGovCuomo) August 7, 2020
Initial school requirements include:
- Schools must post their remote learning plans & their testing/tracing plans online
- They must set dates for 3-5 discussion sessions with parents & community (prior to Aug 21)
- And have at least one separate discussion with teachers alone
He also reminded that masks are required when social distancing is impossible, saying that every student should plan to have one with them at all times. He said that if a student does not have a mask, the school will be required to provide one.
Of course, this doesn’t necessarily mean that all schools will reopen. It is now up to local government officials and superintendents to decide and come up with a reopening plan within their own districts. Mayor de Blasio responded, however, that if the COVID-19 positivity rate exceeds 3% in NYC, then schools here will not reopen:
We're committed to getting this right. We will reopen safely.
If COVID-19 positvity rate goes above 3%, we will not open. The health of our kids, teachers and staff comes first. https://t.co/e8aFp2IxGB
— Mayor Bill de Blasio (@NYCMayor) August 7, 2020
For the time being, it seems as if reopenings in September, with dual remote and in-person learning models, are imminent.
In other news: NYC Will Install ‘Checkpoints’ At Bridges & Tunnels To Enforce Cuomo’s Travel Quarantine
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