NYC Changes Rule for School Closings to Four Cases in a Week

New York City said four or more Covid-19 cases in a school in a week will result in a 10-day closing, up from a two-case rule that had drawn criticism from parents.

Mayor Bill de Blasio said Thursday that the new rule will help provide a “more stable and consistent schedule” as the city tries to get more kids back into classrooms. A majority of New York City’s 1.1 million students continue to choose remote instruction. A final opportunity for them to switch to in-person class ends Friday.

The city worked with the teachers’ union on the new rules. Effective April 12, one confirmed case in a classroom will force the classroom to go remote for a day, while two or three cases in a week will lead to increased testing but not closings. If there are cases in four different classrooms, and they are traced to known exposure in a school, the building will be closed for 10 days.

The previous rule would close a school for 10 days if there were cases in two classrooms.

“This change will mean that while many classrooms will continue to close, the number of overall schools closed will decline, a repeated request of both teachers and parents,” Michael Mulgrew, president of the United Federation of Teachers, said in a statement.

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