Princeton professor says COVID-19 is spreading in schools, teachers may be at risk

Reopening Schools

NEW YORK CITY — New York state numbers tell the story confirming there is coronavirus spread in schools and teachers are at risk, according to one education policy expert.

Jennifer Jennings is a sociology and public affairs professor at Princeton professor working on education policy.

“The number of positive New York City Department of Education staff cases doubled in the first three weeks of January, compared to total cases reported between September and December,” she said.

The student population is also seeing an increase.

“For all New York City kids 5 to 17 years old, over the same four month period, we had approximately 21,000 cases; we’ve added 12,500 new cases since the beginning of January alone,” she said.

Jennings’ findings found elementary school teachers have gotten infected at higher fractions compared to high school teachers.

The only difference, based on Jennings’ research, is that elementary schools have been open.

Monday, Mayor Bill de Blasio said this upward trend of cases in schools is not the reason why middle and high schools remain closed; he insisted schools are very safe, with weekly testing showing little positivity.

The mayor added that as more and more educators and staff are vaccinated, schools will become that much safer — however the city needs the supply to do it.

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