New York City public schools have reported just 18 positive coronavirus cases among staff and students since opening for in-person learning last month, reinforcing hopes that students can return to schools safely across the U.S. during the pandemic.
The New York City school district, the largest in the nation with 1.1 million students, began offering in-person learning in late September, allowing students to return to school by October 1. Roughly half of students in the district have opted for online learning only, while most of the remaining cohort participates in hybrid in-person and online learning.
The arrangement has reduced class sizes and allowed school staff to implement some social-distancing measures, the New York Times reported on Monday.
The city health department began a random testing regimen in the school system last week, with 15,111 staff and students tested so far. Results have come in for 10,676 of those tests, with just 13 staff and five students testing positive for coronavirus.