COVID NYC Update: Testing and Tracing Protocols Announced for New York Public Schools for the 2020-2021 School Year

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NEW YORK CITY (WABC) – Plans to reopen for the 2020-2021 school year of New York State school districts are expected Friday by Governor Andrew Cuomo on Thursday, testing and tracing protocols were announced for New York Public Schools for the upcoming school year.The announcement was made by Mayor Bill de Blasio and Chancellor of Schools Richard Carranza.

“We are doing everything in our power to keep children healthy while ensuring that they receive the education they deserve,” said Mayor de Blasio. “These rigorous testing and tracing protocols will ensure the safety of our students and staff as we enter this new school year. ”

The plan was developed in partnership with the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, Health + Hospitals and the NYC Test + Trace Corps to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

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In preparation for the start of the school year, the Ministry of Education is purchasing large orders of hygiene supplies on behalf of schools.

These supplies include face coverings for students, teachers and staff; disinfectant, hand sanitizer and electrostatic sprayers.

Each school’s principal and facilities staff are examining the school premises and making any repairs and adjustments necessary to ensure safe conditions for student in-person learning this fall.

“New Yorkers have done the incredibly difficult job of reducing the risk posed by COVID-19, and as a result, we are in a better position than any other city in the country to safely resume in-person education under the conditions. current and with clearly, consistent health protocols, ”Carranza said.

All staff will be asked to take a COVID-19 test in the days leading up to the first day of school.

School staff will have priority access for testing at 34 city-run testing sites, with testing provided free and results accelerated. This test is also available for families across town.

When school buildings reopen, all schools will need to take several precautions to prevent, identify and fight the spread of COVID-19.

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This will include, an isolation room for students with symptoms, physical distancing and facial blankets, day and night cleaning and clear communication with families and the school community.

If a student or teacher feels sick, they should stay home, and if their symptoms are compatible with COVID-19, they are encouraged to get tested.

If a student begins to experience symptoms at school, they will be isolated and supervised by a dedicated staff member until they are taken care of by their parents.

Additionally, if there is a confirmed case in a classroom, the classroom will close and distance learning will be implemented.

If two cases of COVID-19 are linked together in the school, but come from different classes, the school building will close and students will switch to distance learning.

In both scenarios, this plan will last 14 days. If cases of COVID-19 are detected but the link is undetermined, the school building will close and may remain closed for 14 days.

Staff members who become symptomatic at the school are asked to leave the building immediately.

Teachers’ unions are still questioning the plan to reopen, saying there is still no nurse in every school.

The mayor is set to reveal more about child care for the children of essential workers.

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