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Latest updates

June U.S. History & Government Regents exam canceled: The New York State Education Department announced on May 24 that the U.S. History & Government Regents exam scheduled for June 1 has been canceled. Given the tragic mass shooting in Buffalo, content experts and educators determined that content in the exam had the potential to compound student trauma. June 1 will now be an instructional day for students. NYSED will be applying for graduation exemptions for students in light of this cancellation. Read the letter from NYSED »

DOE to provide additional rapid test kits to students and families: Every student will be provided with four COVID-19 home tests each week until further notice. If there is a classroom exposure, students will still receive two test kits and a notification letter from the Situation Room, and would also receive two more test kits during the week. Read the DOE letter to families »

Resolution regarding spring break vacation days for members with negative CAR balances: A decision has been finalized for DOE employees who worked during the spring break of 2020 but did not receive the full number of vacation days awarded to them because they had negative CAR balances at that time. Under the new ruling, members who had a negative CAR balance on May 1, 2020, will receive three vacation days and then have their CAR deficit reduced on a two-for-one basis.  Read the full ruling » 

Update on masking for students aged 2-4: Mayor Adams announced that students younger than five and the staff that work with them should continue to wear face masks in school due to a recent uptick in COVID-19 cases across the city, and not go mask-optional on April 4 as previously stated. We will inform you when additional guidance is released.  

Masks will now be optional for K-12 students and staff as of Monday, March 7: Face coverings will become optional, indoors and outdoors, on NYC public school grounds and on school buses, for K-12 students and staff. Pre-K staff and students will be required to remain masked indoors. Anyone who chooses to wear a mask may continue to do so. See the updated DOE guidance on face coverings » and our safety FAQ »

School outdoor mask mandate lifted: As of Monday, Feb. 28, 2022, masks will no longer be required when outside on school grounds. Read the DOE's message to families » and the DOE's guidance on face coverings » 

Increased in-school testing: Beginning Feb. 7, schools will test the larger of either: 10% of the school’s student enrollment in grades 1-12, up to a cap of 250 students; or, 20% of the school’s unvaccinated student population. This change allows schools with a high student vaccination rate to test a larger number of students every week. Up to 10% of staff who wish to be tested will continue to be able to get a PCR test from the testing team each week. See the DOE's guidance on COVID-19 testing in schools »

Spring break arbitration decided: UFT members who worked over spring break of 2020 will receive a vacation day — a brand-new type of day that members have never had before — for each day they worked. Read the arbitrator's decision »  Read our FAQ »

Time off for boosters and children's vaccines: Members may take up to four hours off for travel and receipt of a booster vaccine, or to accompany a child to receive each vaccine dose without a charge to CAR balances. Read the memo »

Guidance from the DOE