NYC schools reopen for first time in 18 months with mask mandates, no vaccine mandates for students

More than a million New York City students returned to school this Monday and many are unvaccinated.

In the nation’s largest school district 65 percent of eligible students are vaccinated while 75 percent of school staff are also vaccinated. This comes after Mayor Bill de Blasio stated back in March that he wanted students back in schools by September. There is no current vaccine mandate for eligible students in New York City and according to Mayor DeBlasio “we just don’t think that’s the right thing to do” (ABC 7 NY).

New York City schools chancellor Meisha Porter has required masks in the classroom, at least two air purifiers in each room and all school staff must be vaccinated with at least one dose by September 27. Students must come back to school unless categorized by the city’s “medically fragile” exemption, where they can stay home and attend class remotely. However, those who apply for medical exemption are not guaranteed the Department of Education will grant the request (CBS News).  

Chancellor Porter told “CBS Mornings” there is currently no plan to mandate the COVID vaccine for New York City students, yet are monitoring school districts like Los Angeles that have mandated the vaccine. 


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