Earlier this week, Mayor Bill de Blasio gave the green light to explore outdoor learning possibilities for all types of schools in New York City.
"A new outdoor learning plan is going to open up a lot of wonderful possibilities for our kids and for our educators," he said during Monday's press briefing. "So we heard those voices that asked, 'Can we do something different under these circumstances' and the answer is yes."
Proper air ventilation is a key component of stopping the spread of COVID-19. We just announced comprehensive school air safety measures to address, monitor, and report air quality and ventilation in every @NYCschools building by the first day of school.— NYC Public Schools (@NYCSchools) August 25, 2020
Following the announcement—and hesitant reactions to the outdoor proposals—the NYC DOE has issued a statement on air safety measures that will be taken inside each school. According to the DOE, it will "address, monitor and report" air quality and ventilation in every building by the first day, which is on track to be Sept 10, despite the pushback for a delay.
The DOE further reports that professional engineers will conduct SCA-led inspections, 10,000 portable air purifiers will be purchased and there will be CO2 testing devices for all buildings. Inspection criteria was derived from the CDC, WHO and the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. Should a room not meet the necessary criteria, it will not be used.
"The science is clear: Well-ventilated buildings are safer buildings and we're going to make sure that's true for every school by the first day," Chancellor Richard A. Carranza said.
Have questions about these new safety measures? Make sure you're signed up for the virtual DOE information session happening tomorrow—the final one of the summer.
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