Spring break has been canceled in New York’s public schools and teachers have been ordered to keep teaching remotely amid the new coronavirus pandemic, according to the teacher’s union.
The United Federation of Teachers said in an email sent to members Tuesday, “Governor Cuomo believes public schools can play a critical role in keeping kids engaged in learning at home … that is why he is using the emergency powers that he legally has to keep schools open during spring breaks.”
New York City public school teachers and students were scheduled for a break from April 9 to 17, but now have just April 9 and 10, according to the email.
“I know that many of you are upset and you feel that it isn’t fair,” said UFT president Michael Mulgrew said in a video message reports Patch.
“We’re being asked to step up even more than what we have already been doing and I think we have to embrace this challenge.”
A city Department of Education spokesperson confirmed the order to the New York Post, which also reports the ruling will affect charter schools.
New York City teachers, parents and students have since launched an online petition against the order that garnered more than 18,000 signatures by Wednesday morning.
“We implore the Mayor and Chancellor of New York City and the Governor of New York State to MAINTAIN the upcoming scheduled NYC Spring Break,” the petition reads.
“Consider that your actions only add to the socio-emotional stressors that all impacted households already feel and that this is in absolute violation of your responsibilities in service to the people of this great City and State.”