Protesters in New York City gathered outside City Hall in Manhattan on Thursday. They demonstrated against Mayor Bill de Blasio for shutting down the city’s public school system.
De Blasio shut down the nation’s largest public school system because of rising COVID-19 cases. However, Catholic and other elite private schools in the city have permission to remain open for in-person instruction.
According to Fox News, the more than 1 million children enrolled in the NYC public school system stopped in-person instruction on Thursday. These students are transitioning into online classes until at least Thanksgiving.
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The New York City Department of Education, however, will keep running buses for children who attend nonpublic or charter schools.
“The party of science has suddenly decided not to follow the science,” said New York City assemblyman Joseph Borelli, as reported by Fox News. “The harm this is doing to children is going to be irreparable.”
“It is all a complete policy reversal,” he added. “It seems we can have mask mandates for every purpose under the sun, except now schools and education for children who need it is deemed nonessential.”
According to the Archdiocese of New York, which represents more than 60,000 students, Catholic schools will continue to follow state health guidelines and hold in-person classes. Also, “decisions regarding closures can be made on an as-needed, school-by-school basis,” reported CBS New York.