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December 2020 Covid-19 School System Reopening!

Dear Families,

As you are aware, on November 18, we temporarily closed school buildings for teaching and learning, and all New York City public school students transitioned to fully remote learning. Today, we are pleased to share our plan to reopen school buildings for in-person instruction for many of our students. These return dates apply to students in blended learning, including those who selected blended learning during the recent opt-in period. All students in grades 1 and higher returning to buildings on the schedule below must submit a COVID-19 testing consent form by their first day back. Visit mystudent.nyc to complete it online, and see more information at the end of this email.

When Will My Child Return to the School Building?

Students in Grades 3K through Grade 5 will return to in-person learning beginning on Monday, December 7. Your school will contact you with your student’s specific schedule. This includes all students in grades 3K through 5, across early education and elementary 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).

Students in all grade levels in District 75 will return to in-person learning beginning on Thursday, December 10. Your school will contact you with your student’s specific schedule. Students in grades 6 through 12 (outside of District 75) will continue to learn remotely until further notice.

This plan excludes schools currently located in State-designated Orange Zones, or Red Zones that may be declared. You can see if your school is currently in one of these Zones at nyc.gov/covidzone. As of now, schools in Orange Zones remain closed for in-person learning. We are working with the State to develop a plan to reopen buildings in Orange Zones as soon as possible and will share information as soon as a plan is confirmed with the State of New York. There are currently no Red Zones in New York City, but per the State, school buildings in Red Zones would also be closed.

Submit your COVID-19 Testing Consent Form

Given the ongoing fight against a citywide resurgence of COVID-19, mandatory weekly testing of students and staff for COVID-19 is a crucial part of our plan to keep all schools safe. Each week, a random selection of staff and students in your child’s school will be tested for COVID-19.

The test is quick, safe, and easy. A video showing the testing process is available at schools.nyc.gov/covidtesting.

Any student in grade 1 or higher returning to school buildings must submit a consent form for COVID-19 testing in school by their first day back in school buildings. 3K, Pre-K, and Kindergarten students are excluded from random testing.

Even if you have already submitted consent, we ask you to do so again to ensure your student has the latest consent form on file. There are two easy ways to submit:

1) Fill out the form online using a New York City Schools Account (NYCSA) at mystudent.nyc.

  • If you already have a NYCSA account linked to your student(s): Log in, click your student’s name, click “Manage Account,” and then when a dropdown menu appears, click “Consent Forms.” Read the page, and then choose the consent option at the end for your student.

  • If you do not already have a NYCSA account: You can create one right away! If you have an account creation code from your school, you can create a full account in just a few minutes, and then provide consent as described above. If you do not have an account creation code from your school, you can still provide your consent by clicking “Manage Consent” under “COVID-19 Testing” and filling out your and your child’s information.

2) Print and sign the consent form and bring it to your child’s school on the first day they are back in the school building. A printable PDF file is available in ten languages at schools.nyc.gov/covidtesting.

You must submit consent by the day that your child returns to your school building; this is the due date, and we need all students to participate. If your child comes to school on their first day back for in-person instruction without a consent form on file, principals and school staff will contact you to obtain consent.

After that, students without consent forms on file, who do not have a medical or disability-based exemption submitted, must be moved to fully remote instruction.


More information on exemptions will be provided by your child’s school principal this week. It’s up to all New Yorkers to continue to take the steps we know are key to preventing the spread of this virus. Please remember the “Core Four”: wash your hands, wear a face covering, keep six feet of distance from others, and stay home if you’re feeling sick. These are critically important steps that all of us can take every day to protect ourselves, our city, and our communities, against COVID-19. We are grateful for your flexibility and patience as we continue our journey together through this unprecedented year. All of us at the DOE are focused on a strong, supportive education for your child every day—no matter where they are learning—and that will never change. We look forward to welcoming students back into school buildings in the coming weeks, and will continue to provide updates as this public health crisis continues to evolve. In the meantime, please do not hesitate to reach out to your child’s school with any questions or concerns.

Thank you for your partnership. Sincerely, New York City Department of Education

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