Schools and children

Saturday, June 6, 2020

DOE website alerts page:

Information about school meals and remote

5/22/2020 Gov. Cuomo announced summer school will be conducted through distance learning this year to help reduce the risk of spread. Meal programs and child care services for essential employees will continue. School districts must also develop a plan for students with disabilities who participate in extended summer school year programs over the summer to ensure they receive instruction. The state will make a determination on the fall semester and issue guidelines in June so schools and colleges can start to plan for a number of scenarios. K-12 schools and colleges will submit plans for approval to the state in July.

Department of Education (DOE) website

5/23/2020 Summer School: This year, the Department of Education (DOE) will offer summer school via remote learning. In addition to academic instruction, students participating in these summer school programs will have opportunities to go on self-paced virtual field trips and engage in daily social-emotional learning activities.

  • Students in grades 3-8 who are not promoted in June will be required to attend summer school. They will participate in six weeks of remote instruction from Monday, July 13 through Tuesday, August 18, 2020.
  • Students in grades 9-12 who receive a grade of Course in Progress, or who need to retake a course they have failed in a prior term, will participate in remote instruction for the course(s) in which they need to earn credit. Remote instruction will run from Monday, July 13 through Friday, August 21, 2020.
  • Students in all grades with 12-month Individualized Education Program (IEP) will participate in remote summer programming from Wednesday, July 1 through Thursday, August 13, 2020. All students who are receiving or are eligible to receive these services will be contacted by their school shortly.

5/23/2020 Pre-K Offers and Waitlists. Families with children born in 2016 can view and accept their child’s offer online with the MySchools portal In addition to viewing and accepting their child’s offer, parents may see the waitlist their child is on, add their child to a waitlist, or check their child’s position on each waitlist. More information is available from the DOE’s website

4/12/2020 New York City public school buildings are closed through the end of the term, according to Mayor de Blasio. The DOE commenced online learning on March 23 and will continue at least until June 26. All school trips are cancelled. The United Federation of Teachers announced that more than 40 current teachers and retirees had died due to the virus as of 4/11/2020. 5/4/2020 This has been confirmed by Gov. Cuomo.

5/3/2020 School board elections and budget votes statewide are delayed until June 9. The school board elections and budget votes will all be conducted by mail and all qualified voters will be sent an absentee ballot with return postage paid. (Source: Gov. Cuomo's email of 5/3/2020, Executive Order)

It’s official: NYC relaxes grading policies in wake of massive shift to remote learning
April 28, 2020,, by Alex Zimmerman and Christina Veiga
The new policy...takes into account that students may be experiencing trauma and have difficulties accessing online learning...For elementary school students, teachers will evaluate whether a student is “meeting standards” or “needs improvement,” based on writing samples, projects, or other assignments. The same procedure is in place for middle school students in grades 6-8 with one addition: They can also receive a “course in progress” [instead of a failing grade] on their report cards, which means they will automatically be enrolled in summer school...High school students will continue to receive normal letter grades, with the exception that no one will receive a failing grade. They will have the option to convert their grade to a “pass” rating, which would not affect their GPA...Many New York City middle and high schools admit students based on their academic records, but the pandemic has forced the city and state to suspend the most commonly used measures. Attendance no longer counts towards enrollment decisions, the state has canceled standardized tests, and now, traditional grades have been dramatically altered for students vying for competitive middle and high schools. The education department is still developing guidance on how the middle and high school admissions process will work, according to Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza.
Related: Chancellor Carranza's Message for Families

4/24/2020 What The CARES Act Means For Your Student Loans:

5/3/2020 Face-to-Face Letters and Guidance for Sharing Records with Families: Face to Face Letters/Proof of Enrollment/Proof of Address During this time, when schools are not physically in session, the Human Resources Administration (HRA) will no longer require or ask for “face-to-face” letters as evidence of family composition letters from families who are applying for Cash Assistance (CA) or Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). Call 311 for further information, or log onto the DOE website if your family has an enrolled student.

5/3/2020 The Mayor and Schools Chancellor announced the launch of Let’s Learn NYC!, a new educational public television program produced by the WNET Group in partnership with the New York City Department of Education (DOE) featuring lessons for children in 3K through second grade that will supplement remote learning.

5/3/2020 Advancement Placement Exam Fees: In response to the unique challenges brought on by COVID-19, the DOE is extending coverage of AP exam fees for spring 2020 (including the late-testing window in June) to include all students. In prior years, the DOE has only covered the cost of AP exams for economically disadvantaged students. This year, the DOE will cover all base AP exam fees, which is the basic cost of the exam, and late order fees, while the College Board will waive all other fees, including canceled, unused, and late-testing fees. The College Board will not assess any fees for exams not taken in spring 2020. On March 20 the College Board announced it would be shifting all paper-based AP exams to online testing, which students may complete at home. A small number of AP courses will not have final online exams and will instead have a written paper or portfolio requirement that will be used to determine an exam score; a full list of exam offerings, testing schedule, and submission deadlines is available on the AP Coronavirus Updates page

4/21/2020 DCTV, the media arts center located in Chinatown, has put all its public programs online. You can take filmmaking classes, get tech advice in their Online Filmmaking Workshops and Office Hours-- and they're also streaming new documentary films via their Virtual Cinema. Their Youth Media students are creating personal video diaries of their lives under quarantine. If you know a NYC student 14-21 years of age who might be interested in participating, please check out DCTV's Youth Media programs. Visit to learn more and take part!

4/6/2020 The New York State Board of Regents is cancelling the High School Regents exams in June.
Emergency regulations from the Board of Regents:

4/3/2020 Chancellor Richard A. Carranza announced that schools will continue with remote learning 4/9-4/17, originally scheduled for Spring Recess. Teachers can take days for religious holidays as their own personal time off.

Getting set up for remote (distance) learning

  • The NYC Dept. of Education (DOE) will prepare and DELIVER all devices to high school students, multilingual learners, students with disabilities, those who live in public housing. Others who have requested a device will be eligible to receive them after those deliveries have been made.
  • 5/3/2020 Launch of Remote Learning Technical Support Ticket System for Families: The DOE is launching a family-facing Remote Learning Technical Support ticket system Families (or someone on their behalf) can submit requests for technical support for a broad range of issues, including application support, lost, stolen, or broken devices, and delivery status, though the Technical Support for Families page. Note that when families select a topic and issue in the ticket submission form, the form will automatically list common resolutions to technical support problems; if the suggested resolutions do not resolve the family’s issue, they can continue to submit a tech support ticket by completing the form This family-facing system, and the DOE staff remote learning support ticket system, is intended to replace emails to the inbox.
  • If you received an iPad from DOE, setup instructions are available at If you need help, contact Apple Support at or call 1-800-800-2775. If you have issues connecting the device to T-Mobile internet, visit or call 1-800-375-1126.
  • If you already HAVE a device and need technical support, call 718-935-5100.

Remote learning resources and updates from NYC DOE:

Additional details can be found at NYC Public School Closure Information.The Department of Education has said that absences due to coronavirus will be tracked separately, and will not affect academic standing. Parent teacher conferences will proceed virtually or by phone. Updated protocols schools are taking to prevent the spread of coronavirus

Essential Resources Remote Learning Contact Sheet:

The Department of Education is setting up as a resource for Parent Coordinators. Please send them your feedback on any additional information/resources that should be added.

4/6/2020 Homework help. Students can receive one-on-one free online homework help through the New York Public Library, daily from 2 – 11 pm, in English or Spanish, K-12. Families will need a New York Library card to access this service, and can apply for a free card at

All parents must create a New York City Schools account for their children to access remote learning. You can sign up at this link:

Remote Learning Portal a landing page for students and teachers with secure links to online learning platforms. Students and families should log in with their student account. If you need help with a student account, contact your child’s school.

Department of Education devices survey. The Department of Education is asking families to complete a survey sharing their best contact information over the next few weeks as well as whether they have access to a smartphone, a laptop/tablet/computer, the internet, or none of the above. Devices will be loaned to students who need a device (1 per student.) Take the official DOE learning devices survey. The DOE will use the contact information you provide to get in touch with you to discuss when and where you can pick up a device. Priority will be given to students most in need, and all devices are granted on a temporary basis and will later need to be returned.

4/19/2020 If you need an ipad for remote learning:
Tech support for DOE-issued devices or request an iPad over the phone call the DOE's Service Desk: 718-935-5100.

NYC allows Zoom (once again) for remote learning
May 6, 2020, by Alex Zimmerman and Christina Veiga

Related information: Need support using Google Classroom? Step-by-step guide


Remote learning and children’s privacy
April 9, 2020,, by Lisa Weintraub Schifferle, Attorney, FTC, Division of Consumer & Business Education

How To Talk To Your Kids About Coronavirus
March 19, 2020,, by Megan VerHelst
There are tried-and-true ways to have the conversation with your kids, but the point, experts say, is don't avoid having it.

With NYC schools closed, many parents become reluctant homeschoolers
March 16, 2020,, by Reema Amin, Alex Zimmerman

Children with disabilities

Students with disabilities: If your child has an IEP (Individual Education Program), you should be hearing from their teacher about developing a specific remote learning plan. If your child currently receives related services, DOE is planning to begin delivering these services via tele-therapy sessions beginning on March 23. Families will be contacted by related service providers to discuss the transition and to begin scheduling sessions. If you have any questions, contact the DOE Special Education Office at or call 311. 

6/6/2020 Under executive order No. 202.37, school districts will be allowed to conduct in-person special education classes over the summer, even as most summer learning is set to continue remotely.

4/8/2020 NYC gives the OK to shrink special education services amid coronavirus upheaval
April 8, 2020,, by Alex Zimmerman

includeNYC Resources, live chats and support for parents of children with disabilities. Visit their coronavirus response updates, share concerns, or access the help line.

Tutoring and activities

Free Tutoring Now Available: Beginning today, families with students in kindergarten through 12th grade and an NYPL library card can access tips, activities, and one-on-one tutors through a new partnership with Brainfuse. Tutors are available from 2 PM to 11 PM every day in both English and Spanish. Students can also make use of Brainfuse’s videos, activities, and other learning resources 24/7:

Expanded Resources for Kids & Teens: NYPL’s Remote Learning Resources for Kids & Teens page is a vital tool for young learners and their parents and caretakers while NYPL is temporarily closed. Check out the updated selection of online resources NYPL offers:

Free coding activities from Girls Who Code:

The DOE has learn-at-home resourcesLearn at Home. These do not replace remote-learning materials and are supplementary to coursework.

The Mayor announced a free new digital platform to provide safe, fun, and entertaining virtual activities for New York City's teens and young adults. This first-of-its-kind campaign combines city and community resources to engage teens who are at home during the COVID-19 crisis and also provides tips to cope with the public and mental health challenges that may arise during this difficult time. The program can be accessed at or by texting "Fun" to 97743.

Child care

Several dozen enrichment centers will open on March 23 to provide childcare for frontline workers including first responders, healthcare, and transit workers. Students at enrichment centers will have access to breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and the City is working to open sites throughout the city to serve meals to low-income and homeless youth, similar to the City’s summer meals program.

5/8/2020 has created a new page to connect parents to state-specific resources to help them find and pay for childcare during the COVID-19 public health emergency

5/7/2020 Zoom is now allowed (again).
4/10/2020 DOE will no longer allow the use of Zoom for remote learning. Schools and families must switch to Microsoft Teams as soon as possible. Students can use their DOE student account credentials, while staff should use their accounts. If you need help navigating Teams, visit the Microsoft Student Help Center or call the DOE Service Desk at 718-935-5100.

Food service

4/3/2020 Free Meals: 3 free meals will be available for ALL New Yorkers. Meals Hubs will operate for children and families from 7:30 am to 11:30 am, and for adults from 11:30 am to 1:30 pm. No one will be turned away at any time. Adults and children can pick up three meals at one time. Vegetarian and halal options available at all sites. No dining space is available, so meals must be eaten off premises. Parents and guardians may pick up meals for their children. No registration or ID required. Murray Hill location:  Manhattan Academy for Arts & Language, 111 East 33rd Street.

The Department of Education (DOE) is committed to making three free meals available daily for all NYC children. Families can learn the location of the nearest meal hub by texting FOOD or COMIDA to 877-877 or visit website

School Welcome centers and new admissions

4/11/2020 Family Welcome Centers and P311: Family Welcome Center (FWC) buildings have been temporarily closed and staff members are working remotely to support families. FWC staff are available by email, Manhattan:, and are prepared to assist with enrollment and placement of new admissions, questions around admissions, information about offers, and waitlists. There may be higher than usual volume but they aim to respond to all requests within 48 hours. Employees at P311, the DOE’s Parent Support Line, are preparing for remote work beginning 4/13/2020 and will use a remote call management/routing software to avoid disruption in services for P311 callers. Parents can call 311 and say “Schools” to be routed to someone who can assist you.

Pre-K applications

The Pre-K application deadline has been extended to Sunday, March 29. Families can apply online via MySchools or by calling 718-935-2009 (Monday through Friday, 8am to 6pm). Pre-K offers will still be released in May. 

College and post graduate students

Colleges and universities are transitioning to remote learning. CUNY and SUNY will implement remote learning for the rest of the semester. 

CUNY Graduate Center has canceled public programs. Some programs will be broadcast live on youtube.

CUNY opens emergency relief fund for struggling students with $2.75 million in private donations
April 8, 2020,, by Michael Elsen-Rooney

4/11/2020 New York State Bar Exam: The New York Court of Appeals announced on March 27, 2020 that the New York State Bar Examination will not be administered on July 28-29, 2020 as previously scheduled. The examination has been rescheduled to Wednesday-Thursday, September 9-10, 2020. The application period for the rescheduled examination is scheduled to open on May 5, 2020 at 12 am and to close on May 30, 2020 at 11:59 pm.

4/19/2020 SUNY students are encouraged to refer to SUNY’s Community Response to COVID-19 page for the most up-to-date information.

4/19/2020 Commencement ceremonies across the CUNY system will be postponed. College presidents and deans may still consider alternative celebrations that fit their campus. Degrees will be conferred at the end of the spring semester as scheduled.

4/19/2020 CUNY’s Summer 2020 course offerings will be exclusively conducted via distance education format (online), in accordance with guidance from the NY State Education Department (NYSED). 

Wifi and cable offers

5/10/2020 Free cable service for 60 days for families with students, and educators. Spectrum cable is offering free Spectrum broadband and Wi-Fi access until June 30 to households with K-12 and/or college students who do not already have a Spectrum broadband subscription, and installation fees will be waived for new student households. For eligible low-income households without school-aged children, Charter continues to offer "Spectrum Internet Assist," a low-cost broadband program delivering speeds of 30 Mbps. They are also opening its Wi-Fi hotspots across their service area for public use. To enroll in the free broadband service or Internet Assist, call 1-844-488-8395. (It's their standard customer service line, so use the "new service" or "add service" option. To avoid long wait times, call early in the morning or later in the evening, until 1am EDT.)  

5/10/2020 Charter/Spectrum cable is expanding the eligibility for its free offer for internet and wifi until June 30 and it also includes educators (K-12 teachers and college/university professors) who do not already have a Spectrum account. Contact Spectrum at 1-844-488-8395 to sign up (but prepare for a wait!). A free self-installation kit will be provided to new student and educator households

Verizon is offering free internet for households with school-age children, with other learning tools and some premium TV channels offered to customers at no additional cost. Read the release:


New York Public Library resources:
For educators
For families: NYPL is collaborating to bring academic resources to students of all ages

The Frick Collection is now “open” for online visits for schools, colleges, and universities. Sessions are tailored to lesson plans, and led by Frick educators who will guide discussions of selected works of art from the Frick’s collection. Teachers: to learn more and make a reservation, please email with your preferred date and time, the grade level of your students, and the subject of your course.


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