COVID-19: NYC Quote of the Day 2020-07-02

Thursday, July 2, 2020, NYC Mayor de Blasio - Schools Will Be Opening in September

Our eyes are on the fall. We're making steady progress on the health care front. We're making steady progress on the restart. We can have a really strong fall, but a lot of it hinges on reopening our schools safely and successfully.

We are doing the work right now to make the new school year successful. I want to thank the unions who represent the people who do the work that includes UFT, CSA, DC 37. They have been at the table every day in the planning of the new school year. It's been a very cooperative approach. The DOE did a survey of parents and they got 400,000 responses. 75 percent of our New York City public school parents want to send their kids back to school in September.

The goal is to have the maximum number of kids in our schools. There's going to be a lot of logistical challenges with schools that were overcrowded before the coronavirus and now have to practice social distancing. Chancellor Carranza is meeting later today with principals to hone their plans specifically on how much each school will be able to bring back its kids. What's the number each school can hit in terms of bringing back kids safely with distancing.

What will you see? You'll see daily deep cleanings to make sure the schools, top to bottom, are safe. You're going to see constant use of face coverings. They'll be provided for free for anyone who needs them kids, adults alike. Everyone will be expected to wear face coverings. You'll see social distancing. That six-foot rule will be in effect. You'll see a lot of features to make it easy for kids and adults in the school building to stay safe, hand washing stations, hand sanitizer all over the building.

Schools will be opening in September. Each school will have a number, the maximum number of kids that can be in that school with social distancing, using every conceivable space in that school. We're going to convert everything that can be converted to a classroom, to a classroom, to accommodate social distancing.

Some schools will be able to have all of their kids when you factor in the total use of space, and that probably every kid will not be there. 75 percent will, I believe, 25 percent may not, if you believe this survey. For schools that cannot accommodate all their kids in the building, some kind of staggered schedule. That's an ongoing conversation with the unions to see what that final configuration will be, but it will be announced well in advance of school beginning, in the next few weeks.
Edited for redundancy, grammar, and emphasis
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