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Wednesday, March 11, 2020

NYC Department of Education Refuses To Close Schools, But Parent Groups Are Cancelling Meetings

Chancellor Richard Carranza has priorities. His health. As reported by the NY POST and other news organizations, the CEC in District 2, which covers most of Manhattan, cancelled a town hall with Mr. Carranza due to concerns about the coronavirus.

The NYC Department of Education "reluctantly" went along with this, and urged everyone not to attend 'unnecessary events and gatherings' according to this quote from Miranda Barbot for the NYC DOE: “We encourage schools and districts to continue with meetings as planned, except vulnerable populations are advised to avoid unnecessary events and gatherings.”

Yet the true picture is, the NYC DOE does not want to lose the dollars given to them when a student attends class. Absence from school means less dollars into the DOE bank account.

Carranza also has refused to close the schools, as I just posted on one of my other blogs, NYC Public Voice:

The Coronavirus in New York City: No Schools Will Close Because Homeless Kids Have Nowhere To Go

This makes no sense. NYC has more than 1 million students, 200,000 teachers, and thousands of staff and support personnel. With the contagion factor so high for the coronavirus, not closing the schools is irrational, except if you want to examine this decision only in financial terms (see above).

So basically it's time to be vigilant, wash your hands often, and don't touch your face, nose or mouth.

Stay safe.

Richard Carranza town hall canceled over coronavirus fears

Coronavirus concerns have prompted a Manhattan parent advisory group to cancel a controversial town hall meeting in Chinatown with schools Chancellor Richard Carranza.
Community Education Council 2 cited advisories against non-essential gatherings in nixing Carranza’s visit to the downtown school this week.
CEC 2 president Maud Maron said that “the current NYS State of Emergency coupled with advice from public health epidemiologists and local medical institutions” spurred the cancellation, according to an email message.
The DOE reluctantly agreed to the change, according to a spokesperson.
“At this time, there is no need to cancel large gatherings like tomorrow’s scheduled Town Hall, but given the Council’s decision to postpone, we’ll work with them on identifying a new date in the next month,” said Miranda Barbot. “We encourage schools and districts to continue with meetings as planned, except vulnerable populations are advised to avoid unnecessary events and gatherings.”
The meeting generated controversy last month when a senior DOE official sought to relocate it from Sun Yat Sen MS 31 to a school in Chelsea.
Critics argued that the Chinatown meeting was an opportunity for Carranza to repair his frayed relations with Asian New Yorkers and that the DOE should not have pushed for the move.
Others argued at the time that holding the meeting in an Asian enclave would have served as a symbolic show of support with coronavirus on the march in China.
The DOE countered that it only wanted a larger venue to accommodate parent demand and quickly agreed to keep the town hall in Chinatown after the outcry.
“The chancellor is really looking forward to spending time with the parents of District 2, hearing their concerns, and engaging in a thoughtful dialogue,” Barbot said Monday.
But the ominous global spread of coronavirus has since led to more pressing calls for precaution and prevention.