NYC schools not to reopen unless coronavirus rate below 3 percent

New York City officials said Friday that schools will not reopen for in-person instruction unless the city’s coronavirus infection rate remains below 3 percent on a seven-day rolling average.

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that the city would be watching the positivity rate for COVID-19 in NYC to determine if schools can reopen and stay open for the 2020-2021 school year. “We will not reopen our schools unless the city’s infection rate is below 3%.”

The city’s infection rate has remained steady at around 2 percent for several weeks, and was at 1 percent on Friday.

School leadership and staff are reviewing school space and making necessary repairs and adjustments to ensure safe conditions for in-person student learning this fall.

“The city will prioritize free testing for school-based staff with 24-hour turn around time results at any of the 34 city-run testing locations,” New York City Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza said. “School-based staff members are also encouraged to opt into monthly COVID-19 testing which is critically important.”

New York City released a detailed plan for returning students to class late Thursday, hours before New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Friday deadline for the state’s 700 school districts to submit their plans for review. Cuomo said he would decide whether schools in the state would reopen in the fall in the first week of August.