A long-awaited timeline for the reopening of New York City public high schools will be released next week, Mayor Bill de Blasio said Friday.
All 1,800 New York City public schools were shut down for a second time last November after the city’s coronavirus positivity rate based on a seven-day rolling average reached Mayor de Blasio’s health and safety threshold of 3%. The city’s youngest learners and those with the most severe disabilities were allowed to return to schools two weeks later followed by elementary school students in December with officials pledging to reopen middle and high schools after the new year.
But older students enrolled in blended learning were not given the green light to return to classrooms as quickly as officials let on with middle schools only very recently reopening on Feb. 25.
Since January, Mayor de Blasio has promised a complete reopening of public schools in September but has yet to release any details on when high schools can return to physical classrooms.
De Blasio revealed the city’s plan to provide New Yorkers with an update on high schools in the coming days during his weekly interview with WNYC when a listening said that their child has become more withdrawn since the system-wide shutdown.
“Kids have gone through hell and it’s not healthy for them to be out of school,” de Blasio said. “I literally want every kid to be able to come back to every school.”
Later during the interview, the mayor promised that every student would be offered the option of five-day a week in-person learning in September while also assuring potentially skeptical parents that they would be an entirely remote option for students as well.
“ I think there are only two realistic pieces here, a full five-day-a-week calendar and then a purely remote option for families that just won’t be ready at that point,” said de Blasio. “ But I do not foresee blended being a part of the equation anymore.”