New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on September 17 that the city will delay the in-person opening of public schools. Amid growing concerns about the coronavirus pandemic and correlating staffing and safety concerns, the administration delayed the opening over a week. Schools were scheduled to begin on September 21.

3-K, Pre-K, and District 75 schools (serving special education students) will open September 21. Children in fully-remote programs will also begin that day. K-5 and K-8 schools are delayed until September 29 and high school and middle schools will open October 1.

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The system will add an additional 2,500 educators to help ensure safety in the system. The start has already been delayed and parents were given the choice of fully remote, blended, or in-person learning for students.

Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza said of the delayed start, “We’re giving schools more staff, more time and more support, and this helps us to have the strongest possible start to the most unconventional school year any of us have ever experienced.”

New York City is the largest public school system in the country. Los Angeles and Chicago, the second and third largest, both chose fully remote options for learning this year.

The de Blasio administration and school system have said that teachers and staff feel comfortable with cleaning, personal protective equipment, and ventilation systems to ensure a safe reopening.

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