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Coronavirus

Latest updates

Some schools to reopen beginning Dec. 7: Mayor Bill de Blasio on Nov. 29 announced a phased-in reopening plan starting the week of Dec. 7 that will allow elementary school and District 75 students to resume in-person instruction in parts of the city where transmission rates remain low. Read the FAQ »

Most medical accommodations to be extended: Except for pregnancy-related accommodations, UFT members who were granted a medical accommodation to work remotely due to increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19 have had that accommodation automatically extended through the end of June. See the notification being sent to members from the DOE »

City schools to temporarily close: Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that all public school buildings will temporarily close for in-person learning starting on Nov. 19 after the citywide positivity rate, expressed as a seven-day rolling average, hit the 3% threshold. All New York City public students will now learn remotely, and all school-based staff will fulfill their work responsibilities from home. Once the citywide transmission rate has decreased, the DOE plans to return to in-person learning when it is again safe to do so. Read Chancellor Richard Carranza's email to principals »

Winter ventilation guidance: The union has been working with the DOE to ensure that it creates a set of protocols and practices to keep staff and students safe during the winter. See our FAQ and the winter ventilation plan »

January Regents exams cancelled: The January 2021 administration of the New York State high school Regents exams has been cancelled due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. No decisions have been yet made regarding the June and August 2021 administrations of Regents exams or any other state assessment programs. Read the full memo from the New York State Education Department »

Lump-sum payments are now visible in the DOE's payroll portal: Members can click on their Oct. 30 check stub to see the amount they will receive. Later in the week, another screen in the portal will show the full breakdown. If a problem arises, call the union at 212-331-6311 and a salary representative will assist you. Eligible UFT-represented Department of Education employees will receive half of the lump-sum payment on the following dates: Active Q- and H-bank employees, Oct. 30; Q-bank retirees, Nov. 16; H-bank retirees, Nov. 2; Per-session employees, Nov. 2; F-status employees, Nov. 19. The remaining half of the lump-sum payment is scheduled to be paid in July 2021.

Grading policy for 2020–21 school year: The DOE once again is advising schools to ensure that their grading policies take the challenges of remote learning into account in their grading policies. This means taking into consideration students’ access to learning devices and high-speed Internet, adjusting expectations for deadlines and submission of student work, and modifying the grading scale for assignments that may be impractical in a remote setting. See the full policy »

Primary caregivers of medically compromised family members can submit documentation on SOLAS: Teachers may submit proof of their eligibility for consideration for a remote teaching assignment using the Self-Service Online Leave Application (SOLAS). The DOE will review the documentation you submit to determine if you meet the criteria as a primary caregiver for a person at increased risk of severe illness. If you are determined to be eligible, the DOE will notify you and your principal. Although teachers who meet the eligibility requirements should be given priority for remote teaching positions, approval to work remotely is ultimately subject to the needs of your school.

Updated guidance on remote work: The DOE, in consultation with the UFT, has released more detailed guidance about what work can be done remotely and other aspects of the Sept. 25, 2020 Memorandum of Agreement. See the guidance » See the FAQ »