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Bill De Blasio: New York City Schools to Stay Open – For Now

NEW YORK CITY MAYOR Bill de Blasio said Saturday he plans to keep schools in the country's largest school system open as long as possible, standing in stark contrast to the majority of the country's largest city school districts and governors in more than a dozen states who have shuttered their entire K-12 education systems to stem the spread of the coronavirus..

"We are worried about a cascading effect," he said during an MSNBC interview Saturday morning.

New York City schools enroll more than 1.1 million students in 1,700 schools, and if they close, Education News de Blasio warned, the city's public transportation system would be overwhelmed and – more importantly – it would cripple the city's health care system by forcing parents who are doctors, nurses, other health care workers and emergency personnel to stay home with their children.

De Blasio's decision to keep New York City's schools open goes against guidance released Friday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which recommended that all schools close for a period of six to eight weeks, especially in states with high numbers of cases.

New York has more than 400 cases.

Not unlike some of the school systems in the country's other big cities, Press Release Distribution News New York serves more than 100,000 homeless students, many of whom rely on schools for food and a warm and safe place.

"What are these kids going to do?" de Blasio asked. "Do we really believe these kids will hole up in their rooms for a month?"

In all likelihood, he said, they'll go out and play with their friends, which entirely defeats the purpose of closing schools in the first place. At least in school, the mayor said, students can be accounted for and practice proper hygiene.

"There are more than 400,000 teenagers in New York City public schools," he said. "Do you really want 400,000 teenagers at home alone?"

De Blasio said he hasn't ruled out closing the schools if it comes to that, but that right now, "we're trying to hold the line."

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