ALBANY (CBSNewYork) — Gov. Andrew Cuomo says New York schools will remain closed for the rest of the academic year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

As many expected, students will not head back into schools anytime soon. As for summer school being back in the classroom?

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“That decision will be made by the end of this month. Again, nobody can predict what the situation is going to be three-four weeks from now,” Cuomo said.

“You would need to see, in my opinion, a stabilization of the infection rate for a period of time, because kids are going to be kids,” he added.

When asked what about the fall, the governor replied, “there is no decision on the fall, because fall is a long time away.”

Schools have been closed statewide for roughly six weeks.

Cuomo says he wants schools and businesses to start developing plans now to reopen, utilizing social distancing and lessons learned from this, which will be approved by the state.

CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC

“How do you operate a school that’s socially distanced, with masks, without gatherings, with a public transportation system that has a lower number of students on it? How would you get that plan up and running?” the governor said. “We don’t think it’s possible to do that in a way that would keep our children, students and educators safe.”

Schools will continue to offer remote learning for students at home. Meal programs will also continue, along with child care services for essential workers.

“We want schools to start now developing a plan to reopen. The plan has to have protocols in place that incorporate everything that we are now doing in society and everything that we learned,” Cuomo added. “We’re going to be asking businesses to come up with plans that safeguard workers when they reopen. We need schools to come up with plans also.”

CORONAVIRUS: NY Health Dept. | NY Call 1-(888)-364-3065 | NYC Health Dept. | NYC Call 311, Text COVID to 692692 | NJ COVID-19 Info Hub | NJ Call 1-(800)-222-1222 or 211, Text NJCOVID to 898211 | CT Health Dept. | CT Call 211 | Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

New York is on PAUSE until May 15.

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The governor says before then a decision will be announced about whether it will remain that way, or start reopening. That’s when we should learn about the fate of summer camps.

“Some decisions will follow the regional decisions. Whatever we do in that region will apply to the summer camps,” Cuomo said.

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Mayor Bill de Blasio and Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza previously announced New York City public schools would stay closed for the remainder of the year.

The governor said not so fast, arguing the decision must be made on a regional level, in coordination with New Jersey and Connecticut.

“I support Governor Cuomo’s decision to keep schools closed until the end of the academic year. It’s in the best interests of our students, school employees, and families. Any plan to reopen schools must place the health and safety of students and school workers first,” said Nassau County Executive Laura Curran.

Mental health has been a big concern for everyone during this pandemic, and when it comes to front line workers, the state has directed insurers to waive costs when it comes to mental health services.

“They’re working extended hours. They’re seeing a large number of people die. They’re working in very frightening situations. They’re worried about their own health,” Cuomo said.

He also said domestic violence reports were up 30% in April.

Anyone who needs help is urged to call either of these hotlines: 1-844-863-9314 or 1-888-692-9355.

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