Superintendent of Schools Thomas Chadzutko, Ed. D., has announced today all elementary Catholic Academies and Parish Schools in Brooklyn and Queens will remain closed until April 20, 2020. This follows last week’s announcement that the schools would be closed this week, March 16-March 20, 2020, out of an abundance of caution. The decision mirrors the New York City public schools announcement made last night.
“The decision to close is based on the interdependency of services between public schools and Catholic schools,” said Dr. Chadzutko.
Many families that attend Diocesan schools depend on the New York City services such as bus transportation, meals, nurses, and crossing and security guards.
“If there was a safe way for us to open sooner, we would, but we cannot function without those essential services,” said Joan McMaster, Associate Superintendent for Principal and Teacher Personnel.
The latest guidance from the Centers for Disease Control is to restrict gatherings of 50 or more people. Clearly, the school environment would be in violation.
The contingency pandemic plan, which is part of the Office of the Superintendent school crisis management plan, includes digital, distance and alternative instruction for students so that their education is not disrupted. A complete transition to that model of instruction will take place this week.
The Office of the Superintendent is in daily communication with city and state officials and is part of the Coronavirus Education Task Force of the NYC Department of Education. During this time, there is a constant reassessment of the situation and the necessary response in an effort to keep our school community safe.