NYC High School Students Stage Walkout Over COVID Measures
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Students walked out of schools across New York City on Tuesday afternoon to protest the lack of COVID-19 protections . They also demanded remote learning options until conditions improve.
Students organized themselves on social media and demanded more testing and better screening in order to identify coronavirus cases. They asked administrators to permit students to go back to classes that are blended or remote to ensure their safety.
A few of the city’s largest high schools were affected by the walkout. However, it is not known the number of students who participated. The Washington Post reported that more than 80percent of students from two of the city’s largest high schools attended classes on Tuesday.
New York Gov. Kathy Hochul and Eric Adams Eric Adams, the New York City Mayor, have argued for the use of in-person training and show no signs of compromising on this choice. The New York City Department of Education invited students and leaders from the schools who participated in the walkout to discuss their concerns.
“We understand the concerns our school communities during the current crisis,” David Banks (head of the department), wrote in a tweet Tuesday afternoon.
He wrote, “The best decisions can be made when everyone has equal access to the table. I’m inviting students to meet me so that we can work together for safe schools and open schools.”
Schools across the country have been pondering the best way to start classes in 2022. Students from the Oakland Unified school district in California threatened to boycott classes unless the district adopted stricter mitigation measures and offered the option of distance learning. To The Mercury News They have until Monday to fulfill their demands.
Chicago Public Schools canceled classes for five days in a row as teachers and city officials discussed security measures and remote options according to the Chicago Tribune . Schools reopened on Wednesday after the two groups reached an agreement. The agreement defines the requirements for closing schools that have outbreaks, and provides masks for students and teachers, and allows teachers to take unpaid leave when they suffer from an illness that puts them at a higher risk of contracting a serious illness.
Elsewhere, districts have closed schools and shifted to remote learning due to an alarming increase in COVID-19 cases as well as a shortage of teachers. Oklahoma City Public Schools, which is the second largest in the state traditional district, has moved to online learning for Thursday and Friday. After Martin Luther King Jr. Day, in-person classes will resume Tuesday, but district officials said that online learning could continue, according The Oklahoman .
“This is an issue of manpower and we’re out of alternatives,” Superintendent Sean McDaniel said on Wednesday, noting the district had been changing staff assignments and hiring substitutes to cover classes.
According the Clarion Ledger , Mississippi’s COVID-19 epidemic left more than 3,800 students out of school. In Mississippi, over 900 teachers and over 1500 teachers were screened for coronavirus exposure.
School reopenings have sparked debates worldwide. According to BBC the teachers in France took part in a mass protest Thursday to protest the new COVID-19 rules. They also called for stricter measures to stop Omicron variant’s surge across the country. 11 teachers’ unions led the strike, and predicted that 75 percent of teachers would participate in the movement and that half of schools would close.
After nearly two years of shutting schools due to pandemics, Uganda has reopened its schools on Monday, according to and The New York Times .
The Washington Post – “High school students in New York City stage a walkout, citing insufficient coordination measures.”
Twitter: @DOEChancellor, Jan. 11, 2022.
The Mercury News: “Oakland schools: Another “sickout” scheduled for Thursday to show solidarity with students demanding COVID safety.”
Chicago Tribune : “Teachers union approves COVID-19 Safety agreement to end standoff with Chicago Public Schools.”
The Oklahoman The Oklahoman “All Oklahoma City Public Schools to Close This Week due to COVID-19.”
Clarion Ledger: “Nearly 4,000 Mississippi students have been kicked out of schools with COVID-19 infections.”
BBC: “Covid”: Schools shut in France because unions claim that 75% of teachers are striking.
The New York Times: “Uganda Opens Schools Following World’s longest Covid Shutdown”