New York State’s coronavirus tracker website will have a new function that tracks cases in schools statewide starting on Wednesday, officials said.
The state Department of Health has directed school districts to report whenever a student, teacher, or staffer tests positive for COVID-19 now that the fall semester is getting underway. Like the coronavirus tracker website, the page tracking school-based cases will be updated daily, officials said.
“Parents and teachers are understandably concerned about schools reopening,” Gov. Andrew Cuomo said, adding that the dashboard will allow teachers and parents to “know exactly what’s happening in their schools.”
The site will replace the current piecemeal approach in which the public learns about school-based cases directly from Long Island’s 124 school districts, which doesn’t include the region’s dozens of private schools.
So far, staffers have tested positive in the Merrick Avenue Middle School, Islip High School, and St. James Elementary School. A student also tested positive at Stony Brook University.
Schools had to have the state approve measures districts are enacting to prevent outbreaks in order to reopen this month. But there remains widespread anxiety that despite best efforts to mitigate a resurgence in cases, a second wave of the pandemic may be on the horizon.
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