New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced on Friday that New York state public schools will not resume in-person teaching for the remainder of the school year as the state continues to deal with the coronavirus pandemic.
“Given the current situation, K-12 schools and college facilities will remain closed for the rest of the academic year and will continue to provide distance learning. This is the best course of action to keep students, educators and staff safe,” he tweeted.
Cuomo added that virtual learning, meal assistance and child care for essential workers would continue. As for summer school, the governor said that he will make a decision on whether it would be in-person by the end of May, according to The Hill.
The Governor did not provide a timeline for the state’s education system reopening in the fall or later, but did say that schools, including colleges, should begin forming plans on how they expect to reopen their doors in a safe way.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio earlier in the week announced that public schools in the city will drop traditional grading for most of their K-12 students. The mayor also said that the city would hold a virtual graduation celebration for its high school seniors.
De Blasio has said that he considers the rest of the school year cancelled in the city.
Cuomo made clear earlier this month that de Blasio does not have the authority to make such a decision.
“He didn’t close them, and he can’t reopen,” Cuomo said, noting that de Blasio’s statement is essentially a statement of his “opinion” on the issue. “It is my legal authority in this situation.”
Earlier this week, Cuomo said that New York state may start reopening manufacturing and construction after May 15, the date on which the lockdown he ordered is set to expire.
Cuomo said on Sunday the state was operating with a caveat: “Don’t do anything that’s going to bring people in from all across the board.”