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NYC Schools cleared to open

Governor Cuomo announced Friday that public school districts across the state have permission to hold in-person classes this fall, even as districts in many parts of the country where cases are still rising have abandoned the idea and will continue with remote learning.

  • Dig Deeper: As of Wednesday, fewer than 1 percent of coronavirus tests statewide were positive, well below the 5 percent positivity threshold that both the CDC and WHO have targeted as a safe standard for reopening schools. In New York City, the positivity rate is just slightly higher than the state average, with 1 percent of tests coming back with positive results. Mayor Bill de Blasio has said schools in the city would not open if the metric rises above 3 percent, NYTimes noted.
  • Worth Noting: Many NYC school buildings are too old and underfunded to overhaul their ventilation systems, and rely mostly on natural ventilation. Joseph Allen, director of the Healthy Buildings Program at Harvard University, said they could institute other measures, such as opening doors along with windows; adjusting the settings in heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning systems to bring in more outdoor air in instead of recirculating the indoor air; upgrading filters in the systems; and placing portable air purifiers in some rooms. [NYTimes]

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