Return to school 2020

Parent Resources and Information

messages to the families

Welcome to the 2020-2021 School Year

Important information

March Parent Teacher Conferences

The 2020-21 school year is unlike any other that we have experienced. Students are learning at school and home, and family members are playing supportive roles as educators, facilitators, and coaches. The upcoming Parent Teacher Conference (PTC) is an important opportunity for teachers to hear from you about how your student is doing academically, socially, and emotionally, and how the school’s supports are working for your family. The PTC is also an opportunity for educators to provide you with feedback about your child’s academic and social-emotional progress, and what you can do to support your child. If your child is having trouble, you and your child’s teacher can figure out an action plan.

What to Expect at the Conference

Translation and Interpretation Services

We want all families to participate in PTC! Interpreters are available, so please let your teacher or parent coordinator know if you need interpretation services.


Teachers will work with families to schedule conferences during a time that is mutually convenient for both to attend. If a teacher is unable to schedule a phone or virtual PTC meeting on an afternoon or evening during the week of their regularly scheduled PTC, the teacher will work with you to schedule another time to connect.

Conferences will be held by phone or through videoconference, unless the parent requests an in-person conference.

Messages for Families

March 2, 2021: Special Update for Families

Last Friday, I shared that I will be stepping down later this month, passing the privilege and responsibility of being Chancellor to Meisha Porter, a 20-year veteran of the DOE currently serving as Bronx Executive Superintendent. As Executive Superintendent Porter and I work together on the transition, I want to make sure you are aware of some important opportunities coming up over the next few weeks.

First, I’m beyond thrilled that we have finally reopened our middle schools for in-person learning. This is a milestone I have been looking forward to and I was excited to visit middle schools to see our students and teachers hard at work in healthy, safe, and supportive classrooms. As with our elementary grades, all middle schools have 20 percent of students and staff randomly tested on a weekly basis. Just as in our elementary grades, middle school students must also provide consent for COVID-19 testing by their first scheduled in-person learning day. You can do this through your NYC Schools Account at mystudent.n

We are all-hands-on-deck to reopen our high schools as quickly as possible. Our main focus continues to be making sure we have every safety precaution in place, and we will announce a timeline soon.

As we enter the last few months of the school year, I’m pleased to offer several programs and opportunities to further support you and your children. In this Update for Families, you will find important information and resources on:

  • Preparing for Parent-Teacher Conferences

  • Applying for Pre-K and 3-K for Fall 2021

  • Participating in “Weekend Wellness” activities for families and communities

I realize we’re all experiencing pandemic fatigue, but when I see what our students are accomplishing—both in-person and remotely—I am reminded of why we have all worked so hard these past 11 months. My pledge to you is as true today as it was when I began leading the most innovative school system in the nation: that all of us at the Department of Education will continue to deliver the best possible education to all our students, in the safest possible environments.

February 26, 2021: Special Update for Families

I hope you and your families are keeping safe and healthy. I’m writing today with some important news.

After three years leading the DOE, I will be stepping down as Chancellor in March.

I am full of mixed emotions to leave the DOE family. It has been the honor of my career to serve you, and help your child’s school and our whole system get closer to reaching its full potential. The strength and resilience of your children—our 1 million students—is awe-inspiring. It is what drove me through this unprecedented crisis, and it is what I take with me as I leave this post. The commitment and support you have shown to your children, and to your school communities, is incredible.

Throughout my career, my guiding light has been the belief that public education is the most powerful equalizer for children. Public education anchors communities. Public education makes it possible for a child who is poor, or who lives in temporary housing, or—in my own case—who doesn’t speak English when they enter the public school system to develop their dreams, and then to chase them. Truly, it is public education that expresses the highest ideals of our democracy. My time in New York City has only strengthened this belief, as I have seen it play out time and again, in schools all across the boroughs.

And together, we have seen proof. Our seniors kept breaking their own records as graduation rates and college enrollment kept rising higher, and the dropout rate kept getting lower.

We also made true progress in dismantling the structures and policies that are the products of decades of entrenched racism in the city and country. We have worked to undo segregation and turn “equity” from an esoteric concept to a reality. Every school that no longer screens children for admission, and every district that uses DOE resources to create more space for low-income students, or English language learners, is making this mission real.

We finally brought the mental health of our children into the spotlight and made it a major priority so that every child can feel welcomed, comfortable, and safe in their classroom and school community—especially now, when so many of our students are dealing with unforeseeable trauma.

And, of course, at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic we transformed the nation’s largest school system overnight in order to protect the health of our students, staff, families, and communities. We have reinvented what it means to teach and learn in New York City public schools.

All throughout, I have been proud to prioritize what’s best for kids over what’s politically popular. I have never been afraid of hard conversations. I have always believed that we need to set a high bar for every student—and then do what it takes to help them meet it.

You, your children, and the dedicated staff who serve you deserve both continuity and courageous leadership from your next Chancellor. You need someone who knows firsthand the reality on the ground at our schools, and has the talent and leadership to finish the school year out strong and drive towards bringing every child back to buildings in September.

That is why I am so proud that one of the most important leaders in this work will take on the privilege and responsibility of being your next Chancellor: Meisha Porter.

Meisha is a 20-year veteran of New York City public schools, and currently serves as Bronx Executive Superintendent. In this role, she leads community school districts 7-12, covering the entire borough and its 361 schools and 235,000 students. She is a lifelong New Yorker and product of our public schools who first joined the Department of Education as a teacher at the Bronx School for Law, Government, and Justice—a school she helped conceive. After 18 years at the school, where she became Principal, Meisha spent three years as Superintendent of District 11, serving the Pelham Parkway, Eastchester, and Woodlawn neighborhoods of the Bronx. She has been Executive Superintendent since 2018, and in that time, the students of the Bronx have achieved significant academic gains, and schools have gotten stronger and stronger.

Meisha is an unparalleled warrior for our students and our schools. She attended them, she taught in them, she led them, and now she will be Chancellor for ALL of them. None of the last several Chancellors—myself included—have been actively working with our schools, day in and day out, at the time they were appointed. Meisha will break the mold, bringing all her experience, past and present, to support you and your children. You will be hearing much more from Meisha soon, and I will be working with her over the next several weeks to ensure a smooth and productive transition.

More than anything, I am proud to have served you, and so proud of the strides we have made. I don’t know what’s next for me, but I know I will take the spirit and richness of New York City with me anywhere and everywhere I go.

It has been the honor of a lifetime to serve as your Chancellor. I am grateful to each and every one of you.

February 11, 2021: Update for Families

It is hard to believe we are already in the second half of this unusual school year. I am so grateful for your continued perseverance and flexibility during these difficult times, including the added challenges of our recent snowstorms.

Your voice and leadership are important, and I want to briefly share how you can use them to help our schools and students in a very important way. You can now apply to run for a seat in the coming election for Community and Citywide Education Councils. As a member of a Council, you are a voice for your community—and you can help make a direct impact on education policy. This includes through hosting Town Halls with me, collaborating with superintendents to improve student achievement, and advising on school building changes.

Each of the 32 geographic school districts has a Community Education Council, and there are four Citywide Councils: High Schools, English Language Learners, Special Education, and District 75. To apply to be a candidate for a council, simply log into your NYC Schools Account (NYCSA) to get started. If you don’t have a NYCSA account, you can sign up for one at the MyStudent page and then contact your parent coordinator to add your students. You can submit your application through February 28.

Later in the year, for the first time ever, parents and guardians with a child in a New York City public school will have the chance to vote for their preferred Community Education Council candidates and have a direct hand in shaping important decisions in our city. You need a NYCSA account to vote, so if you don’t have one, again, please sign up at the MyStudent page

. Whether as a candidate or a voter, I very much hope you will take advantage of these opportunities to impact our schools.

In other news, I am excited to share that we will be reopening our middle schools for in-person learning on Thursday, February 25. We have developed strong practices to help keep school communities healthy and safe. If you have a student in grades 6-8 and selected blended learning, your child’s principal will reach out with their new schedule. All schools will have 20 percent of students and staff randomly tested on a weekly basis. Students who have not already done so are required to provide consent for testing by their first scheduled in-person learning day in order to learn in person. I encourage families to submit consent through your NYC Schools Account prior to your child’s first day of in-person learning.

And here’s some good news for families currently applying to middle or high school: We’re giving you more time to submit your applications. The new deadline to apply to middle school is February 23 and the new deadline for eighth- and ninth-grade families to submit their high school application is March 1. As a reminder, you can apply one of three ways: online at the MyStudent page, through your child’s current school counselor, or through a Family Welcome Center.

This is an exciting and important time in our schools, as together we celebrate both Black History Month and Respect for All Week. Our educators and students across the city are engaged in thoughtful exploration of these issues as they connect to our lives and our national experience. Having this conversation deepens our understanding of how we can make progress toward justice and fairness. You can find some great resources to help with these discussions on the DOE’s official blog The Morning Bell and at the Morning Bell NYC Celebrate Respect for All Week page.

Thank you again for working alongside us as we educate your children. We know how important school is for your student, whether they are learning remotely or in person—and our dedication to them remains unwavering during this challenging time.

I hope you and your families enjoy the upcoming midwinter recess, February 15–19. And Happy Lunar New Year to those who celebrate on February 12!

February 8, 2021: Update for Middle School Families

I hope you and your loved ones are safe and healthy. I am writing to you today with an exciting update: we will be reopening our middle schools for in-person learning on Thursday, February 25.

Since the beginning of the school year, I have heard from many of you who are eager to have your child return to a physical classroom. We are pleased that we can now re-open our buildings to students in grades 6, 7, and 8 in a manner that prioritizes health and safety, while offering the educational experience of learning with our dedicated educators in person.

We have developed strong practices to help keep school communities healthy and safe, and to maximize in-person learning time for students learning in our buildings. Here is what you need to know about how your school will return to in-person learning:

Weekly COVID-19 Testing and Mandatory Consent

  • All schools will have 20% of students and staff randomly tested on a weekly basis.

  • All students who have not already done so are required to provide consent for testing by their first scheduled in-person learning day in order to learn in person.

  • Families are encouraged to submit consent through your NYC Schools Account at the MyStudent page

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 approximately five 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 right away by clicking “Manage Consent” under “COVID-19 Testing” and filling out your and your child’s information to provide consent.

  • You can also print and submit the form attached to this letter.

Students who do not submit consent will be immediately transitioned to fully remote learning.

December 15, 2020 : Information on Potential Inclement Weather Closures

Dear Families,

I hope you are safe and well.

As we head into winter, it’s likely we will have inclement weather that in an ordinary year would cause all schools to close for teaching and learning. This year, if a snowstorm or other weather demands that school buildings close, all schools will still conduct remote learning on that day. All students will be expected to log on and engage with their work from home as they do on other days when they learn remotely. Middle and high school students who are already learning remotely every day are expected to attend school remotely, regardless of the weather.

The ability to teach and learn remotely across the system allows us to continue learning despite inclement weather closures. You will still be notified as usual when we are closing buildings due to weather, but these will not be days off from learning.

Your school will stay in close communication with you regarding the upcoming snowstorm predicted to affect New York City beginning the evening of Wednesday, December 16. Please note that extra meals will be available on Tuesday, December 15 and Wednesday, December 16 to take home.

Please do not hesitate to contact your principal if you have any questions.

December 11, 2020: December Reopening

Dear Families,

What an exciting week this has been, reopening our school buildings for in-person instruction after this recent brief closure. I want to thank our students and families, our teachers, principals, and school staff for a safe and smooth reopening. I know it hasn’t been easy, but public education is critical to our city’s, and nation’s, future, and it is why we continue to do everything in our power to keep our school communities thriving.

With support from all corners of New York City, we have been able to bring students in 3-K through fifth grade, and students in all grade levels in District 75 schools, back into classrooms. This is an important step in fulfilling our pledge to you: to provide a safe, secure environment in which your children can learn and grow. And a quick reminder: for blended learning to work best for everyone, we need your child to show up to school on their scheduled in-person days. Blended learning students in grades 6 through 12 in district 1–32 schools, including those participating in District 75 Inclusion Programs, will continue to learn remotely at this time.

Unfortunately, COVID-19 is still very much with us. Given the ongoing fight against a citywide resurgence, please note that we have changed our in-school testing protocol. In order to keep our buildings open, we now require mandatory, weekly in-school testing for COVID-19 for a randomly selected portion of staff and students in grades 1 and higher.

And this is critical: If your child returns to school 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 an approved or pending medical or disability-based exemption, must be moved to fully remote instruction.

In this Update for Families, you will find information on:

  • What you need to know about mandatory, in-school testing

  • How to submit consent for in-school random testing

  • What to do if your child has recently traveled

  • What you need to know about exemptions from in-school testing

  • How to apply for kindergarten for the 2021–2022 school year

  • How to learn more about elementary admissions

  • How to participate in Parent University, a new platform offering families on-demand courses and resources on a host of subjects.

Because so much uncertainty comes with this pandemic, we remain committed to our time-honored traditions, which remind us that we are a community. One of those is our annual Big Apple Awards, recognizing outstanding teachers and college and career counselors. This year, it feels especially important to honor the teachers or counselors who have made a difference in your child’s life. Nominate an educator by January 10, 2021 by visiting the Big Apple Awards webpage on our site.

As always, I am grateful for your flexibility and patience as we continue our journey together through this unprecedented year. There is no doubt that Covid-19 has affected our children—academically, socially, and emotionally, and we are already looking ahead to the next school year. This week, the Mayor and I introduced the 2021 Student Achievement Plan to bring our schools back stronger than ever next fall. Working with our educators and all of you, we will create a roadmap rooted in healing and learning. I’ll be sharing more on this in the months to come.

I know that if we all do our part, we can ensure a strong, supportive education for every child every day—no matter where they are learning.

What You Need to Know about Mandatory, In-School Testing

In order for your child to return to in-person learning, you must submit the consent form for in-school COVID-19 testing by the first day your child returns to their school building.

  • Testing will happen weekly for a random selection of staff and students in your child’s school.

  • 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.

  • 3-K, pre-K, and kindergarten students are excluded from random testing.

  • The test is quick, safe, and easy. If you have not submitted a consent form and your child is learning in person, you must do so right away.

How to Submit Consent for In-School Random Testing

Submitting consent to have your child tested for COVID-19 in school is quick and easy. 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).

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 approximately five 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 right away by clicking “Manage Consent” under “COVID-19 Testing” and filling out your and your child’s information to provide consent.

2) Print and sign the attached 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 COVID-19 Testing for Students and Staff.

November 2, 2020: Opting Into Blended Learning for the 2020-2021 School Year

Dear Families,

We know this year has been unlike any other​, with families juggling many complex decisions through uncertain conditions. We recognize and appreciate your family’s flexibility and resilience, alongside all students, families and school communities across the City.

Now that school buildings have re-opened and COVID-19 infection rates have stayed markedly low citywide and in our schools, we know many of you are considering having your child return to school for in-person learning. If you previously chose full-time remote learning for your child, now is your chance to opt into blended learning for the remainder of the school year! By November 15, please opt into blended learning by completing the Learning Preference Survey

(Open external link)

. Families who need additional assistance with the survey can call 311.

At this time, families will not be able to opt into blended learning after November 15.

Families that choose blended learning during this opt-in period will begin in-person during the weeks of November 30 or December 7. Your child’s school will communicate your child’s start date and in-person learning schedule with you directly.

Students who are learning in-person will participate in random testing for COVID-19 throughout the school year. Regular testing of staff and students in schools allows us to keep our schools and broader communities healthy and safe. Testing is easy, quick, and safe; this test is a short, small swab (like a Q-tip) that goes just in the front of the nose. To ensure that your child can be tested, please submit a consent form for testing. You can complete the consent in two ways:

  1. Online: Fill out the form online using a New York City Schools Account (NYCSA). Go to

  2. (Open external link)

    • 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 approximately five 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 right away by clicking “Manage Consent” under “COVID-19 Testing” and filling out your and your child’s information to provide consent.

Paper Form: Fill out and return the paper form to school. A printable PDF file is available in ten languages at

You can find additional information about consent and testing under Frequently Asked Questions at on our Covid Testing page.

We know that family circumstances may change, and we are committed to providing flexibility to families who need to transition to remote learning at any point during the school year for any reason. Families can use the same Learning Preference Survey to opt into remote learning at any time.

For families that choose blended learning, we are excited to welcome you back to our school buildings for an exciting year of in-person learning. And to all families, thank you again for your partnership as we work to provide a best-in-class educational experience for our students, regardless of how they are learning this school year.

Important Links

Let us know by completing the Learning Preference Survey

October 26, 2020: Grading Policy for the 2020-2021 School Year

Dear Families,

Over the past month, I’ve been visiting schools throughout the city and have felt such a strong sense of community both in-person and virtually. I’ve been especially proud to see our schools promoting safe and healthy learning environments—both indoors and outdoors. In every class I see, students and staff members have been diligent about protecting one another’s health and safety, wearing masks, maintaining physical distance, and more. Whether your child is learning in school for part of the week or fully remotely, ensuring safe, high-quality learning experiences remains our number one priority.

As your child’s learning journey continues this year, it is critical that you have a clear picture of their progress. Grades provide a common language for understanding and communicating with your child’s teacher(s) about their strengths and areas for growth. However, given the challenges we have been navigating together throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, we have recognized the need to update our grading policy. In this letter, I will share information about the grading policy for the 2020-21 school year.

Please note that our policy reflects feedback from school communities, school leaders, and many other stakeholders across the city. We have heard loud and clear that as students continue to adapt to remote and blended learning, our grading policy must also evolve to meet the academic and social-emotional needs of our students. The 2020-21 grading policy aims to provide you with a clear picture of your child’s progress while honoring each individual student’s experience adapting to new ways of learning.

What You Need to Know About Grading in the 2020-21 School Year

Here are key elements of this year’s grading policy:

  • Student grades will still be based on academic progress and performance, considering students’ entire body of work in each subject. Grades reflect students’ level of understanding and skills in a subject as of a specific point in time.

  • This year, each school selects its own grading scale from among several options. Examples of common grading scales include the 1-4 scale, the numerical scale (100 points), and the alphabetical scale (A-D).

  • Schools’ grading policies will reflect the new ways students complete their work in blended and remote learning models. This means flexibility with assignments, giving students different ways to show what they have learned, and more.

  • Families have flexibility in determining how passing final grades are reflected on student records. This is an option for families who prefer to have their child’s performance reflected more generally (such as “Pass” instead of a numerical grade) as they continue to adapt to blended and remote learning.

  • Additionally, students will not receive failing grades if they have not yet met the learning outcomes for their courses; instead, they will receive another mark (“needs improvement” or “course in progress,” depending on grade level) and will be provided with additional time and support to ensure they can master course concepts and earn credit as appropriate.

  • While students must continue to participate in remote and blended learning each day, attendance will not be a factor in student grades. Attending school, participating in class, and demonstrating understanding are all essential components of student learning, and school communities must make every effort to ensure that students attend school, with a goal of every student, every day.

Summary of Key Components of Grading Policy in 2020-21


Grading Policy Summary

3K & Pre-K

No change because students do not receive report cards or grades.

K – 5th

Schools select their grading scales for marking period and final grades. Students will receive grades of “needs improvement” (N) in place of failing grades. Parents/guardians may choose to have any passing grade updated to a passing grade of “meets standards” (MT).

6th – 8th

Schools select their grading scales for marking period and final grades. Students will receive grades of “course in progress” (NX) in place of failing grades. Parents/guardians may choose to have any passing grade updated to “pass” (P). Grades of “P” will not be factored into students’ GPAs.

9th – 12th

Schools select their grading scales for marking period and final grades. Students will receive grades of “course in progress” (NX) in place of failing grades. Parents/guardians may choose to have any passing grade updated to a passing grade of “credit” (CR). Grades of “CR” will not be factored into students’ GPAs.

If your middle or high school student receives a “course in progress” grade, their school will support them in continuing with their learning beyond the end of the term, as appropriate for the grade level and subject area. Teachers will target instruction to the individual needs of each student. Together, this will help your student make progress toward the learning outcomes for their courses.

If You Need More Information

You should reach out to your child’s teacher or principal for more information about your child’s progress and your school’s expectations and scales for grading. When your child’s school issues report cards, your child’s grades will also appear in your New York City Schools Account

(Open external link)

(NYCSA). If you do not have a New York City Schools Account, visit our NYSCA page or contact your child’s school for more information.

Blended Learning Opt-In Period: November 2 – 15, 2020

Please also note that fully remote families will soon have the option to opt-in to blended learning, meaning that students will learn in the school building for part of the week, and remotely at home the rest of the week. From Monday, November 2 through Sunday, November 15, families will have the option to fill out a form

(Open external link)

indicating their wish to change learning preferences. Students who change from remote to blended will begin in-person between the weeks of November 30 and December 7, and will be informed by their school their start date and schedule. Schools will make every effort to accommodate these requests based on programming and space capacity.

As always, we are grateful for your partnership in your child’s education. We remain focused on delivering a strong, supportive, engaging learning experience for your student, no matter where they are learning.

Our new grading policy honors their hard work—and yours—during this unprecedented time. We will continue to support you and your child every step of the way.

Welcome to the 2020-2021 School Year

Reopening Update for Families: September 4, 2020

How Will My Child Learn at Home?

Whether learning remotely from home part of the week or every day, students will receive remote instruction in two different ways: live interaction (sometimes referred to as “synchronous instruction”) with teachers, and independent learning (sometimes referred to as “asynchronous instruction”), which includes assignments, projects, or recorded video lessons. Let us explain what that means:

Live interaction means that your student will interact with their teacher on video, phone, live chat, virtual app, or another digital mode in real time. The teacher may be interacting with the whole class, small groups, or individual students. It can be done over Google Meet, Microsoft Teams, Zoom, or other DOE-approved video or phone conferencing or digital platforms. It includes:

  • Class Lessons;

  • Office Hours to connecting in real time with teachers to get individual or small group help with instruction or instructional activities;

  • Social-emotional wellness activities such as sharing circles or mindfulness exercises; or

  • Feedback discussions with students and families about their work and progress via video or phone.

  • Other “live participation” activities, such as chat, offered by the digital platform used by educators during lessons.

At the beginning of the school year, here are the target amounts we are asking all schools to engage their students in live interaction and instruction each day:

  • Students in 3-K and Pre-K programs: up to 30 minutes

  • Students in kindergarten through grade 2: 65 to 95 minutes

  • Students in grades 3–5: 90 to 110 minutes

  • Middle school students in grades 6–8: 80 to 100 minutes

  • High school students in grades 9–12: 100 to 120 minutes

The amount of time devoted to live instruction will increase each month for all grades as the school year progresses to allow students and teachers to gradually transition. Scheduled times will be posted so that students and staff alike can plan for engagement.

Independent learning means your student will work on their own with assignments, projects, and materials provided by their teachers. This might include:

  • Video lessons or presentations recorded previously

  • Activities, assignments or tasks that build on lessons from previous days

  • Collaborative projects and assignments with classmates

  • Discussion boards and conversation, feedback, or guidance from teachers over email

Who Will Be Teaching My Child?

Your child will have a high-quality educator leading their education, no matter where they’re learning. Instruction may look a little bit different in every school, reflecting the specific needs of the school community, but here is what you can generally expect:

For Students in Blended Learning

Blended learning refers to a combination of on-site, in-person instruction at the school some days of the week, and remote instruction at home on remaining days.

Your child may have different teachers for on-site and remote learning. Those teachers will work closely together in pairs or teams to create meaningful and connected learning experiences. For example, a student may begin a project in person and then continue to work on it while remote.

During the remote portion of blended learning, your child will regularly be with the same group of students with whom they attend in person.

For Students in Full-Time Remote Learning

Where possible, students engaging in full-time remote learning will be taught by teachers from their own school. Teachers will regularly meet with the same group of students on specific days.

How to Stay Informed on Confirmed COVID-19 Cases in Your School Community

It’s important that your school can reach you to share crucial information quickly, including alerts about confirmed COVID-19 cases in your child’s school. Please sign up for a NYC Schools Account (NYCSA) so we can contact you via phone, email, or text message. With NYCSA, you can access your child’s grades, test scores, schedules, transportation information, and more—from anywhere, and in all nine standard DOE language translations.

NYCDOE Reopening plan

New York City Department of Education submitted a plan to reopen schools, click here to review plan

School Schedules

The DOE has developed three baseline programming options for schools to choose from. The models have been created by analyzing system-wide constraints, researching national and international best practices, surveying parents and students, and holding focus groups with school leaders. They are meant to support schools in determining how to serve the needs of their students and families in line with health and safety guidance.

  • These models apply to Elementary, Middle, and High Schools

  • Two additional models are available for District 75 schools

  • Schools will be able to apply for an exception to implement an alternative model based on that school’s specific needs

  • Families will be notified of their school’s decision on scheduling in August

Programming Models

Principals and school leadership teams will compare the different programming models to the specific needs of their students and communities to select a best-fit model. However, the Chancellor has identified certain models as "Chancellor Recommended" so that there is greater consistency for parents across the system. Schools should select a model in collaboration with their School Leadership Team (SLT), and wherever possible, students should be programmed for in-person instruction at greater frequency. Schools will be able to apply to their Superintendent for an exception that will be subject to review and approval. Principals will have at least one parent meeting in advance of selecting a program model to inform parents of selection and allow for input before final decision is made.

View more information about the Programming Models

For further information please click here

New York City Department of Education's District School Reopening Plan

Submission to New York State Education Department

View and print a PDF of the New York City Department of Education's District School Reopening Plan: Submission to New York State Education Department - Click Here

To find the plans for individual schools, use Find a School, type in the name of the school. Once you are on the school page, scroll down to the box called School Reopening Information 2020 to find that school's plan.

Letter from the Chancellor

On behalf of the New York City Department of Education, please accept the submission of the following reopening plan. This plan meets the standards as outlined by the State Department of Health and the State Education Department and is informed by deep engagement with school community stakeholders. It may be updated in the coming days and weeks.

Nothing is more important to me than the health and safety of our students, educators, and school communities. Over the past four months, the New York City Department of Education has been exhaustively planning for a coordinated reopening of school buildings in an ever-changing landscape, while keeping health and safety at the center of our planning. We have leveraged the expertise of our partners at the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, NYC Health and Hospitals, and the New York City Test + Trace Corps to develop rigorous protocols to ensure our schools are well prepared. With their collaboration, we will take swift and decisive action when needed to address any issues of concern and prevent the spread of COVID-19 in school buildings.

This submission builds on the preliminary plans released on July 8 in which I outlined essential planning information to school communities regarding social distancing, health and hygiene measures, and models to ensure safe instructional programming of students while still ensuring academic rigor. Despite the once-unimaginable challenges presented by the COVID-19 crisis, we remain as committed as ever to providing a high-quality education to every student. To achieve these goals, NYCDOE is committed to providing continuous policy updates and has been doing so on a weekly basis since, both on our website and via regular updates to our principals and school communities. All of our policies will always be guided first and foremost by health and safety.

The information included in this plan will be similarly shared with stakeholders, whose input and voices have been critical to its development. We know that it is essential that we navigate this new territory in partnership with school communities across the city. We have listened to the voices of families and students to ensure our plans are responsive to their needs and concerns. We have lifted up the voices of educators and worked collaboratively with principals to keep the safety of our staff as a driving factor of our decision-making. Additionally, we created multiple opportunities for feedback and questions through citywide and school-based information sessions, which will continue over the next several weeks.

As we continue to prepare for the 2020-2021 school year—which will look like no other in history—I am confident in the preparedness of the New York City Department of Education. We have the best students, staff, and families anywhere in the world. Working together, we can meet the unprecedented challenges presented by COVID-19 while ensuring a safe, welcoming, and academically rigorous return to school.


Richard A. Carranza

learning bridges

Please complete this survey : Click Here to express interest in the Learning Bridges program, which will provide child care options for children from 3-K through 8th grade this fall for days when they are not in school buildings.

As the New York City Department of Education resumes in-person schooling this fall, most schools and sites will operate on a blended learning model. This will include some in-person services for a portion of the week and reduced class sizes in accordance with social distancing guidance.

The information collected in this survey will be used to guide the City's planning for the Learning Bridges program. Families can expect more information about a potential placement in the coming weeks.

Please note: programs will become available on a rolling basis through the start of school.