COVID-19 cases remaining steady in the Bronx

More than 800 students and staff in New York City’s public school system tested positive for COVID-19, prompting the closure of hundreds of classrooms, according to city Department of Education data.
Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office

The Bronx continued to see progress against the spread of COVID-19 with a stagnation in daily positive cases, as well as it’s lowest seven-day positivity rate since Delta variant began its surge of coronavirus infections across the nation.

Entering Monday, Bronx County has reached 193,858 confirmed COVID-19 cases, with a seven-day average of 262 newly confirmed cases per day, according to the state’s recent health data released on Sept 18.

Additionally, the county has a seven-day positivity rate of 2.9%.

Entering Monday, there were 1,050,368 confirmed cases in New York City, with 68.6% of the population vaccinated.

The city’s Department of Health reported that the spread of the virus remains stable. However, AM NewYork also reported that 15 areas of the five boroughs saw 100 or more new cases reported. The common denominator for 14 of the 15 zip codes on that list is vaccination, or lack thereof, as their fully vaccinated rates were below 60%.

But the city’s slowing COVID rate is also being challenged by a recent COVID-19 outbreak at a East Harlem High School and legal challenges to a citywide vaccination and mask mandate.

More than 800 students and staff in New York City’s public school system tested positive for COVID-19, prompting the closure of hundreds of classrooms, according to Department of Education data. As reported by the DOE on Friday, there was 812 cumulative total positive cases, consisting of 325 staff members and 487 students, data showed.

In the Bronx, one or more classrooms closed in a school or children’s care center due to COVID-19:

P.S. 9 – Ryer Avenue Elementary School
P.S. 13 – John Peter Zenger
P.S. 18- John Peter Zenger
P.S. 19- Judith K. Weiss
P.S. 20 – George J. Werdann
P.S. 23- The New Children’s School
P.S. 25- Bilingual School
P.S. 29- Melrose School
P.S. 36- The Rising Stars School
P.S. 41- Gun Hill School
P.S. 53- The Basheer Qusim School
P.S. 54
P.S. 56- Norwood Heights
P.S. 64- Pura Belpre
P.S. 65- Mother Hale Academy
P.S. 66- School of Higher Expectations
P.S. 72- Dr. William Dorney
P.S. 73
P.S. 76- The Bennington School
P.S. 86- Kingsbridge Heights
P.S. 90- George Meany School
P.S. 112
P.S. 152- The Evergreen School
P.S. 154- Jonathan D. Hyatt
P.S. 181- Pablo Casals
I.S. 144- Michelangelo
I.S. 151- Lou Gerhig
I.S. 201- The School for Theater, Arts and Research
The Women’s Housing and Economic Development Corporation (WHEDco)
New Settlement Community Center
P.S. 230/I.S. 229 – Roland Patterson
Harriet Tubman Sheltering Arm
Leontine L. Pryor Day Care Center
P.S. 279 – Captain Manuel Rivera, Jr.
P.S. 333- The Longwood Academy
Wilson Day Care
Bronx Community Charter School
I.S. 80/P.S. 280 – Mosholu Parkway

As a result of the positive cases, there are currently 372 classroom closures and an additional 303 partial classroom closures, meaning only some class members may need to quarantine depending on vaccination status since most students — in middle and high school — are eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine.

The nation’s top leaders said in various media appearances last week that efforts to get younger children vaccinated remain a top priority, with Halloween as a target date for the 5-11 crowd.

“You could potentially have a vaccine available to children ages 5 to 11 by Halloween,” Dr. Scott Gottlieb, the former Food and Drug Administration (FDA) chief who sits on the board of Pfizer.
But there are rising challenges for New York City and its virus-curbing measures, as a new lawsuit filed on Friday, challenges the city’s mask mandate for all students, staff and faculty in school buildings during the ongoing pandemic.
The lawsuit, filed in New York Supreme Court, advocates for parental choice and claims the state’s regulation “is arbitrary and capricious given the absence of any emergency justifying the use of emergency adoption procedures.”
On Sept. 14, New York Supreme Court Judge Laurence Love issued a restraining order against New York City’s vaccine mandate for public school teachers and staff, temporarily blocking the city from enforcing it. Additionally, a federal judge temporarily blocked the state’s mandate forcing medical workers to be vaccinated after a group of healthcare workers sued, saying their constitutional rights were violated.

Both of those cases will be heard on Sept. 22.

This third wave of COVID-19 cases in the five boroughs can be largely attributed to the highly contagious Delta variant of the virus, which the city Health Department says accounts for about 99% of all new infections in the past four weeks.

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