NY Governor Hochul announced today that she would lift the mask mandate for schools statewide on March 4. NYC Mayor Eric Adams said that if the Covid numbers still low, he will lift the school mask requirement on Monday, March 7, as well as vaccination mandates for indoor dining, fitness centers and entertainment venues.
Meanwhile, the vaccination rates in many schools remain quite low, with wide disparities across the city. On Friday, two months after the legal deadline for such reporting, the DOE finally posted vax rates citywide and by school. You can download the spreadsheet here, or look up the name of your school here.
Citywide, the rates of fully vaccinated children is at 52%, though at 130 schools the average is under 20%. Aside from some vaccination clinics in Nov. and early December, there has been very little apparent attempt by DOE to encourage parents to raise these rates, for reasons that are hard to understand. Nothing has been done since the new administration took over.
Given the low rates of vaccination in many schools, the lifting of the mask mandate at this point will likely make many parents and teachers anxious.
And though the administration has finally complied with one part of Local Law 152, it still has not complied with these other reporting requirements, to my knowledge:
5. The number of unvaccinated students required to quarantine due to exposure in school to an
individual who tested positive for COVID-19, further disaggregated by students, teachers,
administrators, and other school staff.
d. To the extent such information is collected, the aggregated and disaggregated information
required weekly pursuant to subdivision b of this section shall also be further disaggregated by
grade level, gender, race or ethnicity, individualized education program status, English language learner status, status as a student residing in shelter and status as a student in temporary housing
that is not a shelter.
e. No later than 30 days after the effective date of this local law, and monthly thereafter, the
chancellor shall conspicuously post on the department’s website the aggregated and disaggregated
information required pursuant to subdivision c of this section, further disaggregated by grade level,
gender, race or ethnicity, individualized education program status, English language learner status,
status as a student residing in shelter and status as a student in temporary housing that is not a
shelter, to the extent such information is collected.
When will they? It's anyone's guess.