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February 8, 2023: Health and Safety Update

Message from the NYC Department of Education

Per the Mayor’s announcement on Monday, the New York City Board of Health is expected to make changes to the City’s current vaccination requirements this week. Specifically, as of February 10, 2023, NYC Department of Education (DOE) staff and other individuals in DOE schools and buildings – including visitors and family members – would no longer be required to show proof of vaccination against COVID-19. This means that COVID-19 vaccination would be optional for DOE staff and others who work in DOE buildings, as well as for volunteers at school-led functions such as field trips and others participating in activities in school buildings.

Schools will continue to provide masks and have COVID-19 tests available for distribution for students and staff. These tests can be used by students, staff, and family members for testing due to symptoms, in case of known exposure, or for testing after participation in high-risk activity (such as travel and large gatherings).

As a reminder, staying up-to-date with COVID-19 vaccinations is still the best tool we have to fight COVID-19 and to keep our schools safe for all our students. Children aged 6 months and older are eligible to be vaccinated against COVID-19. Updated bivalent COVID-19 vaccine boosters are now available for people aged 6 months and older. We encourage all those eligible to receive these boosters. If your child is eligible but not yet vaccinated or boosted against COVID-19, please take the opportunity to make an appointment at vaccinefinder.nyc.gov or call 311 to find a vaccine site near you. You can find more information here: nyc.gov/site/doh/covid/covid-19-vaccines.page#boost. Please visit cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019ncov/vaccines/stay-up-to-date.html for more information on COVID-19 vaccination schedules. To stay up to date with our current covid information please visit here: schools.nyc.gov/schoollife/health-and-wellness/covid-information  

To protect against COVID-19 and other viruses, and in alignment with the recent health department advisory, we strongly recommend that everyone wear a mask at all times when in a crowded, public indoor space, including at school; practice frequent handwashing; and cover their mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing.

Additional information about this change is included below.

Thank you for your continued partnership.

Sincerely,

The New York City Department of Education 

Will parent-teacher conferences be in-person?

Parent-teacher conferences will continue to be conducted remotely, though Parents and caregivers may always request in-person conferences at a mutually agreeable date and time.

Does this mean non-vaccinated parents can enter schools again? Attend PSAL games?

Yes, this means non-vaccinated parents and community members can enter schools and attend Public School Athletic League (PSAL) games and other activities that take place in school buildings.

How does this affect PSAL and other sports activities at schools?

As announced in September 2022, students are no longer required to be fully vaccinated to participate in high-risk sports or extracurricular activities.

To view a copy of this ​document in your language, visit https://www.schools.nyc.gov/about-us/messages-for-families.