CDC says opening schools this fall ‘critically important’ for public health

NY Capitol News

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — New York State is one to two weeks away from Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s decision on whether schools will be able to reopen for in-class instruction this fall. The Governor has said that he will make a decision on school re-openings, based on a formula, the first week of August. 

Thursday, the director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention put out a statement saying it was “critically important… to open schools this fall.”

The New York State PTA doesn’t have any comment on the new CDC guidance but said that school districts across the state are working tirelessly to put their health and safety plans together to be reviewed by the state. Those plans must be submitted by July 31.

“We’re really excited to work with our units and parents, educators and school buildings to see our children return to school in a safe way,” said NYS PTA Executive Director Kyle Belokopitsky.

And school districts could look “very different” from each other this fall. 

“Some school districts may be doing a hybrid model where there’s remote instruction, in-person instruction,” Belokopitsky said.

The Governor was asked at Friday’s press briefing if the CDC guidance would impact his determination on school reopenings.

“I look at the CDC guidance, but my point is very simple. If the virus is under control, open the schools. If the virus is not under control, don’t open the schools,” the Governor said.

Meanwhile, as schools face uncertainty over reopenings, it was announced that Interim New York State Education Department Commissioner Shannon Tahoe is leaving on August 13.  The Board of Regents “expects” to appoint an Acting Commissioner before that date.

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