Stay informed about the coronavirus

CORONAVIRUS Updates - New York State


  • New York State has greatly expanded testing capacity, meaning any New Yorker statewide can get a coronavirus test. To learn more or find a testing site near you, visit:


  • Schools with reopening plans approved by the state Education Department are open for the 2020-21 school year. Schools that have reopened must close if the region’s 7-day average infection rate exceeds 9% after Aug. 1.
  • To protect the health of students, faculty and staff, the following guidelines must be followed:
    • Everyone must wear face masks in school facilities and on school grounds, though students should be permitted to remove their masks during meals, instruction and for short breaks, as long as they maintain social distance. Students must also wear face masks on school buses and measures should be considered to reduce bus density.
    • Everyone must maintain a distance of at least 6 feet in all directions, or physical barriers must be constructed if maintaining that distance isn’t possible. When students are singing, playing wind instruments or engaged in aerobic exercise, a distance of 12 feet must be maintained.
    • To the greatest extent possible, schools should “cohort” students. Cohorts are self-contained, reasonably sized groups of students that must remain fixed for the duration of the COVID-19 health emergency. Schools must also limit intermingling between cohorts as much as possible.
    • Students, faculty, staff and any other visitors must be screened before entering school facilities. Any person with a temperature above 100.0°F must be denied entry or sent to a dedicated pickup area. Faculty and staff must also answer daily screening questionnaires, while students should periodically fill out questionnaires.
    • Schools must develop specific policies for vulnerable populations, including students, faculty and staff, that accommodate their specific situations to the greatest extent possible.
    • For more information on school reopening guidelines, visit:
  • To ensure students, parents, faculty and staff are all on the same page, school districts must:
  • All schools outside of New York City must close if their region is placed in a red or orange cluster zone under the state’s Cluster Action Initiative. Schools in those zones can only reopen if they:
    • Remain closed for at least 4 calendar days, including 2 days to clean school facilities and conduct additional testing, after the zone designation is announced
    • Ensure all students, faculty and staff test negative before they return to school in-person.
  • Once schools in a red or orange zone have reopened, they must conduct weekly recurring testing of the entire school community and limit in-person attendance to 25%. To learn more, visit: 
  • Local schools and businesses are offering free grab-and-go meals for kids who need them through December 31. If you need assistance finding a location near you, contact your local school district. (,financially%2C%E2%80%9D%20said%20Secretary%20Perdue.)
  • School districts can provide in-person special education services and instructing during the summer term. (

Changes to Day-to-Day Life

Financial Relief

Check with your local grocery store about limited hours and/or special hours for seniors to shop.

For updates and more information, visit the New York State Department of Health website at or call 888-364-3065.

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