New York, NY-Today, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced a new school reopening plan: beginning on Monday, September 21, New York City will phase students back into classrooms on a rolling basis, starting with pre-K students, 3K students, and students with significant disabilities, who will report to schools next week. All other students will begin the school year remotely on Monday, September 21, meaning New York now joins a long list of other big cities that will start the school year online for most students. On September 29, elementary schools will open, and middle and high schools will open on October 1. For a full breakdown on the new phase in plan for in-person learning go here. Please note that the following information could change.
In response to the announcement of the phased in in-person learning plan, Andrea Ortiz, Manager of Education Policy for the New York Immigration Coalition, issued the following statement.
“The safety of students and teachers must always come first. However, accessible communications with all NYC school families continue to be lacking, and we hope that the DOE and schools will prioritize improving communications with our immigrant communities, alongside the health and safety of all students and staff. Despite all precautions and safety measures, COVID-19 is not going away anytime soon, so the DOE must put plans in place to ensure accessible and timely communications of urgent information for all New York families. Immigrant students and families, like all New Yorkers, need the stability that schools provide for our families, now more than ever."
What Families Need to Know About the School Reopening
3 Key Steps to Prepare Your Child for the New School Year
- Create an NYC Student Account. The NYC Student Accounts allow for families to update their personal information, including their phone numbers and addresses, which will help keep you informed. The account will also provide families with information about their child’s blended learning schedule.
- If possible, families should contact their schools and get a school verification number, so they can create full accounts where they will be able to see the information on busing, childcare, COVID cases, among other things.
- If families cannot contact their schools, they should reach out to their district superintendents for help.
- Fill out the device request form and contact your school if your children do not yet have a device or have a device that was broken or damaged.
- Families interested in child care for remote learning days can call 311 or fill out a survey online for the Learning Bridges program.
- Learning Bridges is a new DOE program that aims to provide free childcare for children 3K-8th grade on days when children are scheduled for remote learning. The program will initially be available for 300,000 children but is expected to grow in capacity. Families who previously completed the Learning Bridges survey will be automatically entered into the enrollment process, but are not guaranteed seats. Apply here.
- The Office of Pupil Transportation (OPT) is finalizing busing logistics, as contracts are still being finalized, drivers are still being re-hired and busses are being inspected by the DOE and the State.
- There will be alternatives to bus transportation for children who can’t access a school bus on the first day of school.
- OTP sent MetroCards to all schools and accounted for parents as well. Each school will figure out the MetroCard distribution for their school.
- OPT will reimburse families who opt for other forms of transportation, such as car services, taxis, Ubers, etc. The DOE will have an online form to submit for reimbursement, which will be available in the next few days. Families should keep all receipts for any alternative forms of transportation used.
- Beginning on Monday, September 21, in-person students will receive grab and go food in school and will eat them in the classrooms 6 feet apart. Remote instruction students will have access to meals at the school buildings closest to them, through an exit door. Students will be able to pick up meals between 9 am-12 pm.
- Adult meals will be available in up to 200 locations between 3-5 pm, the locations have not been finalized yet.
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