DOE is releasing plans today to re-open school buildings with enhanced weekly testing for COVID-19 in place for students and staff. Update for Families.
Sun, Nov 29 12:23pm

Happy Sunday dear PS20 community. Here is the latest from the DOE. This is an update for our families.

Stay healthy, be safe.


Dear Parent Leaders, 


I hope you had a restful Thanksgiving holiday this year.


Working in partnership with the City and the State, DOE is releasing plans today to re-open school buildings with enhanced weekly testing for COVID-19 in place for students and staff. To re-open schools successfully and with sufficient testing support, students in blended learning—including those who just opted into blended learning—will resume in-person instruction on the following schedule:


·         Students in 3-K, Pre-K and grades K through 5 will return to in-person learning beginning on Monday, December 7

o   This includes all students in 3-K and pre-K programs and elementary grades K through 5, across school types (e.g., in K-2 schools, K-3 schools, K-5 schools, as well as District Pre-K Centers,  K-8 schools, and K-12 schools).  

o   This excludes schools currently located in State-designated Red and Orange Zones. You can see if your school is in a Red or Orange Zone at


·         Students in all grade levels in District 75 schools will return to in-person learning beginning on Thursday, December 10

o   This excludes schools currently located in State-designated Red or Orange Zones. 


·         Students in grades 6 through 12 (outside of District 75 schools) will continue to learn remotely until further notice.


·         These return dates apply to all students in blended learning, including those who selected blended learning during the recent opt-in period. Students who selected remote-only instruction will remain in remote only.


  • Students and staff who have recently traveled outside of New York to a place on the State’s travel advisory list must quarantine for 14 days or test out of the 14-day quarantine based on the State’s guidance, which can be found here. Staff and students should continue to complete the health questionnaire daily.


As always, our first commitment is to health and safety for all of our DOE community, above and beyond everything else.  Here is how we collectively can help keep schools open:


·         Mandatory Weekly Testing: To ensure schools remain a safe and health place to learn, all schools will have 20% of students and staff tested on a weekly basis.  Scheduling and logistics for testing will be shared with principals prior to test administration day each week.


·         Student Consent: All students are required to provide consent for testing by December 7 or by their first scheduled in-person learning day. If a student arrives on their first day of in-person without a consent form in hand or submitted online, their parent or guardian will be called that day to collect consent immediately. 


o   Families can submit consent using NYCSA or this updated consent form (also attached to this email). Please note that even if parents previously provided consent, we are asking them to submit again to ensure they have the updated consent form for their child that reflects the requirement for weekly testing in your school. Note that the consent form was updated on Wednesday, October 14 to reflect this change.

o   Students who need a medical exemption (available for all students) or disability-based exemption (available for students with IEPs) will be able to submit separate forms for approval or can request a medical accommodation .  More information will be provided to families by Monday.

o   Students without consent and who do not have medical exemption or disability-based exemption will be moved to fully remote instruction.


·         Staff Consent: All staff are required to provide consent by the first day they report to their school building.


·         Situation Room: The Situation Room remains schools' point of contact for any possible cases of COVID-19 in schools, and will continue to guide schools to ensure the health and safety of our school communities.


Additionally, to support school building re-opening, we will ensure that School Safety Agents, the Office of Pupil Transportation, Office of School Food, Office of School Health and School Facilities are ready for students and staff to return to school buildings.



Please share the attached letter and consent form with families, which discusses the school building re-opening schedule and required consent for mandatory in-school testing. Translations of the family letter will be available as soon as possible at


Thank you for your continued commitment to supporting and advocating for our students, families and communities.



Adrienne Austin, Esq.

Acting Deputy Chancellor

Division of Community Empowerment, Partnerships, and Communications

New York City Department of Education

52 Chambers Street  | Room 320| NY, NY 10007 | (212) 374-2486

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