New York City reopened its public elementary schools on Monday, but officials warned that indoor dining at restaurants could be stopped within days if coronavirus hospitalizations failed.
America’s largest city, ravaged by the first wave of the pandemic in the spring, closed all public schools on November 19 after the total proportion of positive coronavirus tests reached three percent.
About 850 schools that educated New York’s youngest children reopened their doors Monday after Mayor Bill de Blasio revised his criteria for suspension due to low infection levels in classrooms.
The return to personal learning for five to ten-year-olds comes despite the fact that the degree of positivity in the city rises to about five percent.
High schools, colleges and public colleges remain closed and will only offer virtual lessons until at least January.
New York has one of the lowest rates of infection in the United States, but a significant increase in cases, combined with an increase in hospitalizations, has worried authorities.
State Governor Andrew Cuomo warned on Monday that restaurants must stop eating if hospital stays are not stabilized within five days.
Restaurants currently have room for customers within 25 percent.
Cuomo said he expected hospital stays to increase further due to last month’s Thanksgiving Day and ahead of Christmas and Hanukkah.
America’s leading epidemiologist Anthony Fauci, who appears with Cuomo, warned that families gathered during the holidays could lead to falls reaching new heights next month.
“Without significant mitigation, mid-January could be a really dark time for us,” Fauci said.