Governor Andrew Cuomo’s decision on whether to reopen New York City’s schools is among the most consequential he has had to make in months of grappling with the Covid-19 pandemic.
Beyond the risks to public health, at stake is the education of 1.1 million students, the livelihoods of their parents, the working conditions of 235,000 school workers and the ability of thousands of struggling businesses to employ people and survive. The governor has said he would decide on local districts’ plans by Friday.
Officials in the largest U.S. school district have spent the past five months planning for a hybrid schedule in which students would attend school one to three days a week, depending on a building’s capacity. The rest of the time, the district intends to offer online learning. But the split schedule causes as much difficulty as stay-at-home instruction, said Janine Harper, a former Parent-Teacher Association