All schools are required to follow health and safety protocols to prevent, identify, and address the spread of COVID-19.
Schools will also:
- Promote healthy behaviors such as physical distancing, wearing face coverings, handwashing, and using sanitizer
- Clean the school throughout the day and disinfect every night
- Maintain an isolation room for students with symptoms with a dedicated staff member or health professional
- Communicate clearly with families and the school community
- Have a nurse in every public school building
- Have biweekly COVID-19 testing for a random selection of unvaccinated students
Get COVID-19 health and safety information for public schools.
Download the DOE health and safety guide.
Daily Health Screenings
Every student and staff member must complete the DOE Online Health Screening Tool prior to entering the school building each day. Anyone entering the building must confirm that they are not experiencing any symptoms of COVID-19, have not recently tested positive for COVID-19, and are not currently required to quarantine based on close contact with an infected person. If you need a thermometer to check for a fever, you can request one from your school.
If you are having issues accessing the online tool, use a paper form or inform school staff verbally.
If a student or staff member is feeling ill, they must stay home and get tested, which is an effective way of protecting the whole school community. Every school will have a nurse on staff to whom students can report if they are feeling ill.
Face Covering Rules
All students and staff must wear a face covering when riding on school buses and anywhere on school property, indoors and outdoors, regardless of vaccination status, unless they have a medical exemption. Every school will have a supply on hand for children and adults.
During lunchtime, masks may be removed so students can eat comfortably at a safe distance from one another. Masks may also be removed during designated “mask breaks”, during which students will maintain physical distance from each other.
Students who are not medically able to tolerate masks will be provided with alternative accommodations.
COVID-19 Cases in Schools
Daily COVID Case Map
You can view a map that shows all known active interventions and cases of COVID-19 at New York City public schools. It is updated Sunday through Friday at 6 PM.
View the daily COVID case map.
Quarantine and School Closure Protocols
As of Monday, September 27, DOE will no longer close an entire classroom when there is a positive case. Vaccinated and unvaccinated students who are wearing face coverings and have maintained at least three feet of distance from a student who tests positive will not be considered close contacts and will not have to quarantine.
Schools will be closed only when it is determined by the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) that there is widespread transmission in the school.
If you have questions or concerns about quarantine protocols, contact your child's school. Visit the School Finder page for school contact information.
School Visitor Policy
All visitors (age 12 and older) must show proof of at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccination to enter a DOE building. Visitors do not include students attending school in a DOE building.
The following are acceptable as proof of COVID-19 vaccination:
- CDC Vaccination Card (or photo)
- NYC Vaccination Record (or photo)
- An official immunization record from outside NYC or the U.S (or photo)
- Excelsior Pass App
- NYC COVID Safe App
- DOE COVID-19 Vaccine Portal (vaccine.schools.nyc)
An acceptable COVID-19 vaccination includes one dose of any COVID-19 vaccine fully authorized or authorized for emergency use by the FDA or WHO.
To learn more about vaccination records, visit Coronavirus (COVID-19) Vaccination Record page.
All visitors must also wear face coverings.
COVID-19 Health and Safety Complaints
To report a school not following COVID-19 health and safety rules, including lack of face coverings or vaccine mandate violations, visit the School COVID-19 Health and Safety Complaint page.