Public schools could shut down as early as Monday: de Blasio

P.S. 29 in Cobble Hill.
Photo by Susan De Vries

New York City parents should prepare for school closures due to a citywide spike in COVID-19 cases as early as Monday, Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Friday. 

For weeks, the number of new cases of the virus has been steadily increasing across the five boroughs pushing the city’s overall positivity rate closer to the de Blasio administration’s 3 percent threshold, triggering a citywide shutdown for in-person learning. 

Schools are still open today. De Blasio told WNYC’s Brian Lehrer the city’s daily COVID-19 positivity rate based on a seven-day average is now at 2.83 percent–a sharp jump from yesterday’s reported rate of 2.6 percent–and the daily positivity rate is 3.09 percent. The mayor added that there 916 new cases of the virus and that out of the 121 people admitted to a city hospital with possible COVID-19 symptoms, 28.8 percent tested positive for the virus. 

The numbers shared by the mayor are from Nov. 11. Since March, City Hall has released a series of daily coronavirus indicators like the daily percentage of New York City residents testing positive for the virus, the number of new cases of the virus and the number of new hospital patients positive for COVID-19 all with a two-day lag. 

“People should get ready,” said de Blasio. “Parents should have a plan for the rest of the month of November. I think that is the safe way to think about it.”