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De Blasio: NYC schools reopening plan to be announced week after Thanksgiving

California pushes back school start times for middle and high school students
Posted at 12:17 PM, Nov 25, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-25 12:46:36-05

NEW YORK CITY — New York City parents can expect to hear more on the city's plan for reopening schools after the holiday weekend, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Wednesday.

"We will be back," the mayor asserted. "Next week we're going to announce the details of how we will come back. It will be in stages."

The update comes one week after de Blasio announced city schools would temporarily shut down as a result of the city's seven-day positivity rate reaching the 3% threshold he previously set.

Fully remote learning began the following day for students across NYC public schools.

"We've proved we can keep our schools safe. But we're going to have to come back a different way, given some of the challenges we're facing with this second wave bearing down on us," de Blasio said Wednesday of the new plans.

The mayor first hinted at the new phased approach to reopening schools at his Monday briefing.

District 75 schools for special needs students will likely be the first to reopen, followed by elementary schools and then older grades, de Blasio said.

Increased COVID-19 testing is expected to play a major role in the new reopening guidelines.

The mayor said any student entering a school building will have to have a signed testing consent form on file.

"We want to be able to test any child, at any point," he said.

However, mandatory student vaccination is not currently in the plans for when a vaccine is available, de Blasio said when asked by PIX11's Kala Rama.

According to the mayor, it could be possible in the future for a school in a red or orange zone to remain open in some way, considering additional safety measures that will be part of the new reopening proposal.

READ MORE: NYC COVID hot spots: The difference between red, orange zones