Governor Hochul updates COVID-19 guidelines for schools

Governor Kathy Hochul today announced updated COVID-19 guidelines that align with new CDC recommendations as children, teachers, and faculty across the state prepare to return to school in the coming weeks. With increased access to COVID-19 information, vaccination, testing, and treatment, New York State is updating its response to ensure all students, teachers, and professors can return to the classroom safely. next month. Read updated tips and frequently asked questions here.

“Since the uncertain early days of the pandemic, New York City schools, teachers and parents have stepped up to ensure learning continues and a safe return to the classroom,” Governor Hochul said. “Today, we are ensuring that state and federal guidelines are aligned so that students and educators can enter the classroom with confidence and have a safe and healthy school year. We are sharing this information with parents, in schools, and we’re making sure our kids are where they need to be this fall. We know there’s no substitute for learning in the classroom, and we’re going to make sure this year is a very different year.

New York has made significant progress in the fight against COVID-19. It is through these ongoing efforts that schools can provide safe teaching environments, increase access to COVID-19 testing, and ensure that staff, students, and their families have access to the resources they need to stay safely at school.

New York State Department of Health Commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett said: “Thanks to the heroic work of our educators, children in New York City have been able to return to the classroom safely. These new guidelines will give schools and districts more flexibility to continue providing in-person instruction as we move forward. to the new school I thank the Governor for her leadership as we work together to keep our classrooms safe.

COVID Mitigation Strategies for the 2022-2023 School Year


  • The CDC no longer recommends quarantine except in high-risk gathering settings.
    • The CDC recommends that all people with known or suspected exposure to COVID-19, regardless of their vaccination status or history of COVID-19 infection, follow current CDC exposure recommendations which include wearing a well fitting mask or a respirator for a full 10 days and get tested at least 5 days after close contact or sooner if symptoms develop.

Staying home if sick or showing symptoms

  • The CDC continues to recommend people stay home when sick. Any student or staff member who exhibits symptoms of respiratory or gastrointestinal infections, such as cough, fever, sore throat, vomiting or diarrhea, should stay home.
  • Testing is recommended for people with symptoms of COVID-19 as soon as possible after symptoms begin. Those who are at risk of getting very sick people with COVID-19 who test positive should seek immediate medical attention for possible treatment, even if their symptoms are mild.
  • Individuals who are symptomatic and awaiting COVID-19 test results or who have tested positive for COVID-19 should follow CDC Isolation Guidance.


  • People who have tested positive or are awaiting COVID-19 test results should stay home and follow the CDC Isolation Guidance. Isolation may end depending on the severity of a person’s COVID-19 symptoms.

-If someone had no symptoms, the isolation can end after the fifth day.

-If someone had symptoms, isolation can end after the fifth day if they have been fever-free for 24 hours (without the use of anti-fever medication) and symptoms improve.

-People should wear a mask until the 10th day after the end of isolation when they feel better (no fever without the use of anti-fever medication and improvement in symptoms).

-Antigen testing is not required to end isolation; however, some schools may allow the use of the ” test-based strategy“to potentially shorten the duration of mask use after isolation.

This builds on New York’s rigorous and multi-faceted approach to managing and mitigating COVID-19. Last week, Governor Hochul announced the relaunch of the #Vaxtoschool Covid-19 vaccination effort, including more than three dozen pop-up vaccination sites across the state in the coming weeks, with more to be added. in a close future.

In March, the governor lifted the state mask requirement in schools. This decision was based on key trends in COVID-19 data showing New York’s significant progress in vaccinations and declining cases.

As New Yorkers enter the fall season, the state and the Department of Health will continue to provide parents and guardians with vital resources, as well as robust and ongoing testing and vaccination.

Staying current on COVID-19 vaccinations continues to be a top public health strategy to prevent serious illness. Everybody 6 months and over is now eligible for vaccination against COVID-19.

All schoolchildren aged 5 or over are eligible for a recall. This includes people who have been fully vaccinated and have not received additional vaccinations this calendar year. Schools are encouraged to continue to promote COVID-19 vaccination in their community.

Parents and guardians can get more information about the COVID-19 vaccine by visiting our FAQs.

In addition to vaccination as a best practice, test offers the ability to connect eligible people who test positive with treatment. This allows schools to mitigate the community spread of COVID-19. Resources continue to be made available to schools to support screening of school populations.

Following this guidance will help schools collaborate with local health departments to support safe in-person learning while providing greater flexibility to meet local community needs as COVID-19 community levels change.

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