New York State releases guidance on reopening schools

Local News

(WIVB)–Governor Andrew Cuomo says there will be no one size fits all approach to reopening schools. The state released its list of guidelines but is leaving the specifics up to each school district.

Across the board , districts need to create a flexible plan. Teachers and students will be required to wear face coverings and social distancing will have to be enforced, and not just in the classroom, students will have to wear masks even on school buses.

Schools will also have to utilize classrooms and any extra space to spread students out during lunchtime, or any meal served during school hours. Schools can begin to reopen if a region is in phase four and the daily infection rates are below five percent or lower over a 14 day period

“If you have the virus under control, reopen. If you don’t have the virus under control, then you can’t reopen, right? We’re not going to use our children as a litmus test and we’re not going to put our children in a place where their health is in danger. It’s that simple,” Cuomo said.

School districts will have until July 31st to submit their reopening plans to the state.

Sarah Minkewicz is a reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2019. See more of her work here.

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