New Schools Closure Policy Takes Effect April 12
Please see the Update from Chancellor Porter and Health Commissioner Chokshi.
Here is what you need to know about the new closure policy:
When will a school close?
Beginning Monday, April 12, 2021, a school will only close if there are 4 or more confirmed COVID-19 cases from 4 different classrooms during a 7-day period, and the cases are traced to exposure inside the school as determined by the investigating team. Many DOE buildings have more than one school within them. Any other schools in the same building will not close unless they have a separate set of 4 or more cases from 4 different classrooms traced to exposure inside the school, or there is close interaction between the schools as determined by the investigating team.
What if there are 2 or 3 cases in a school?
If 2 or 3 positive cases in different classrooms are identified within a school over a 7-day period, the affected classrooms will switch to remote learning for 10 days. The rest of the school will remain open for in-person learning. Additionally, random testing for COVID-19 at the school will immediately be increased to include 40% of a school’s in-person population during the following week. Please note that individuals who have been vaccinated will be included in testing as of now.
What if there is 1 case in a school?
When a school has a single confirmed case, the affected classroom will switch to remote learning for a period of 10 days, just as they do now. Only unvaccinated students or staff in the affected classroom(s) will need to quarantine. Continuing to close classrooms in response to a case of COVID-19, and increasing testing in the event of 2 or 3 cases, allows us to keep school communities safe, while avoiding closures of the whole school. We know how much continuity matters for students, staff, and families, and this approach allows for that while staying consistent with CDC guidance. It is also responsive to the many families and staff who have experienced multiple building closures this school year — and the ensuing disruption it can cause. Our goal is safety and stability for all our families. As always, we are grateful to you and your children for your patience and persistence during this challenging school year.