After significant pressure from groups concerned about the coronavirus spread in New York City, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Sunday that all public schools in the city will close, the New York Times reported.
The measure will affect the lives of 1.1 million children an over 1 million parents, and was undertaken to slow the spread of the coronavirus, the primary concern for local politicians, public health experts, parents and educators in recent days, according to the New York Times.
Beginning tomorrow, students will not report to school buildings for instruction as we transition to Remote Learning and Regional Enrichment Centers. More information is available at https://t.co/a6osApfhy7. https://t.co/iJMja2nk03
— NYC Public Schools (@NYCSchools) March 15, 2020
The New York City public school system is the nation’s largest and includes 1,800 schools. The closure will last until at least April 20, but could last through the end of the school year or even the rest of 2020, Mayor Bill DeBlasio said according to the New York Times. (RELATED: Cuomo Paints Dire Picture Of Coronavirus In New York, Expects ‘Wave’ Of Patients To Flood Hospitals)
The closure is expected to significantly disrupt the parents of students, especially those who work at hospitals and care for the elderly, critical work that will be in high demand as hospitals face the deluge of patients in need of care. There is also little recourse for students who are homeless.
“To say the least, this is a very troubling moment, a moment where I am just distraught at having to take this action. But I became convinced over the course of today that there was no other choice,” de Blasio said Sunday, according to the New York Post. He added that the decision was “something not in a million years I could have imagined” having to do.