COVID-19 school closures plunge to zero after NYC policy change | #coronavirus | #kids. | #children | #schools


COVID-19 school closures have plunged to zero after a change in City Hall protocols last week, according to Department of Education data.

Previously, only two unrelated coronavirus cases were required to shutter a school for up to two weeks.

That format constantly closed hundreds of buildings across the boroughs — often simultaneously.

But that trend ended almost instantly last week when Mayor Bill de Blasio required four cases to lock the doors.

According to DOE figures, there were no buildings closed due to COVID-19 cases on Monday.

“Our health and safety policies and hard-working staff are keeping our schools safe,” said DOE spokesperson Nathaniel Styer. “This is a win for students, families, and educators, and we look forward to welcoming back an additional 51,000 students soon.”

Since the start of the school year, the prior policy induced 2,373 two-week closures and 878 24-hour closures, the numbers show.

Parents intensified their push to change the prior rule in recent months, arguing that it was devised when the pandemic was a greater threat.

They also cited the introduction of vaccines in pushing for the city to scrap the format.

Families argued that the policy was making an already haphazard school year untenable for kids learning in-person.

Meanwhile, de Blasio announced Tuesday that the city is combining recreational and academic summer school programs this year.

The Summer Rising initiative will enroll kids requiring remedial work as well as those looking for non-academic activities.

The DOE is hoping that families — especially those with kids enrolled in remote only classes — will sign up.

Roughly half of all city schools will make the programs available, the agency said.



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