City schools will remain open indefinitely despite mounting coronavirus fears, Chancellor Richard Carranza told a parent group Thursday.
Carranza said the decision was driven by the roughly 100,000 students either living in temporary housing or shelters who depend on schools to provide meals and other programs — and other vulnerable groups, who lean on the school system as a vital social safety net.
That means many students would have nowhere to go and nothing to eat should public schools lock their doors, Department of Education and City Hall officials have argued.
A participant at the meeting of the Chancellor’s Parent Advisory Committee asked Carranza about a petition with about 108,000 signatures demanding a systemwide shutdown.
The schools chief said the DOE would maintain the status quo “until 108,000 epidemiologists” make the same demand.
Carranza reiterated that schools with confirmed coronavirus cases would be addressed on a case by case basis.
Carranza said that the building would reopen after a thorough cleaning.