New York City’s public schools will halve the minimum required isolation period for students who test positive for the coronavirus, and the quarantine rule for unvaccinated students who are exposed to the virus, to five days from 10, officials at the Department of Education said.
All students in kindergarten and higher grades who have tested positive for the virus will be required to stay home for a minimum of five days. Students who are not vaccinated and have been exposed to the virus in another setting will also be required to follow the new policy.
Students can return on Day 6 as long as they have not had a fever for at least 24 hours and are wearing a “well-fitting” mask, though all students and staff members are still required to wear a mask at all times.
According to Nathaniel Styer a spokesperson for the education division, the policy changes were first reported by NY1 Tuesday. They bring the city in line to state guidance for schools, which was issued Jan. 14.
Preschoolers who test positive for the virus at 2 years of age will need to isolate for 10 more days. However, anyone who is exposed and has not tested positive will be allowed back after five days if they have no symptoms or a negative P.C.R. A test will be taken on the fifth day. Two rapid tests at home that are negative on Days 4 or 5 will also be taken.
Children younger than two years old can return to school after seven days provided they are free from symptoms and have not received a negative result of a P.C.R. Tests must be taken on or before Day 5.
Despite the recent rise in Omicron variant cases, the rate of positive tests has started to fall in the city. However, hospitals are still struggling with increasing hospitalizations and test positivity rates. According to the New York Times database, approximately 10,375 people were testing positive for coronavirus each day in New York City as of Tuesday.
The rapidly changing Covid-19 situation continues to disrupt the city’s classrooms, with 1,445 students and 307 staff members testing positive for the virus on Tuesday, according to data provided by the education department.
Source: NY Times