Eleven New York City teachers have filed a petition seeking to return to the remote learning program for two weeks due to the soaring COVID cases in the Big Apple.
In their lawsuit before the Manhattan Supreme Court, the members of the union caucus UFT Solidarity said there is a need to conduct online learning starting on January 18 to give students and staff the opportunity to get tested for the virus and receive the results.
The plaintiff is seeking a temporary restraining order to stop in-person learning and shift to online classes.
The lawsuit was filed as Mayor Eric Adams vowed to keep schools open as Omicron plays out.
The group said Adams’ “Stay Safe and Stay Open” plan falls short of keeping schools safe given the alleged widespread lack of COVID-19 testing availability in the Department of Education and the DOE’s outdated buildings and sub-par ventilation and HVAC systems.
The teachers said they will only return to in-person instruction until the DOE has put into place a universal testing protocol and all students and staff have submitted a negative PCR test.
“At this time, schools are not safe for students and staff,” plaintiff and UFT Solidarity member Lydia Howrilka said in a statement.