Nearly 600 cases of coronavirus in New York schools after buildings opened

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NEW YORK CITY – Public, private and charter schools in the city have seen nearly 600 students and staff test positive for the coronavirus in the weeks after classrooms reopened, state data shows .

The state-run “COVID-19 Report Card” was finally updated with data specific to New York after a delay after its launch. The site, which lists all positive coronavirus tests by school and by district, shows 305 cases among students and staff at public schools in the city last week.

The numbers appear to confirm Mayor Bill de Blasio’s claims that public schools are not major sites of coronavirus infections, despite the recent return to in-person learning and recent coronavirus hot spots.

“We’re not seeing any unusual numbers of students or staff in the city testing positive,” de Blasio said during WNYC’s Brian Lehrer show last week. “What I think is fair is that the school environment has been made extremely safe, and I thank you and all the educators and everyone in the schools, because with the social distancing, the face mask worn by everyone, cleaning, everything worked. schools. ”

The situation is slightly different in private and charter schools, according to state data.

A roughly equal number of positive tests – 291, to be exact – were found among students in private and charter schools, according to the data. What’s remarkable is that enrollment at these schools makes up about 30% of all students in the city, according to the Manhattan Institute.

De Blasio has repeatedly pointed out that even in the coronavirus ‘red zones’ in Brooklyn and Queens, under temporary and localized lockdowns, there were few cases in public schools – there were three in his last. update. Meanwhile, there have been reports of private schools – including a yeshiva in Far Rockaway – with several confirmed cases.

Of those positive tests for private and charter schools, 108 were from “offsite” or remote students or teachers and 183 from students and staff who were “onsite,” according to the state.

It should be noted that no positive cases have yet been recorded on the state report card among public school distance education pupils and teachers. The site is updated daily and these figures could change.

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