Governor Andrew Cuomo Sunday continued to call for schools to stay open during the pandemic.

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New facts from experts, according to the Governor say grades kindergarten through eighth grade should be kept open whenever possible.

The information released during his Sunday phone conference carried on NEWS 4 Buffalo (WIVB-TV) says data shows the positivity rates inside the classroom are much lower than in the surrounding community.

The Governor continued...

“If the kid isn’t in school, then the kid is at home, which is a place where were seeing spread, or the child is out in the playground where you have the community infection rate.”


He noted that the State’s COVID-19 numbers are increasing, relative to New York State’s previous numbers.

The Governor says that “It’s nice that we’re doing better in a national and global context, but it’s irrelevant to one extent because we have to deal with the issues that we have here in New York relative to New York.”

Current thinking is that New York's numbers will continue to increase through the holiday season, dubbed the “winter phase.” Cuomo says he and his team in consultation with health officials and local governments are working on a plan for this next phase and that we can expect an announcement with details about the “winter phase” this week.

The state announced that the positive testing rate in “all focus areas under the state’s Micro-Cluster strategy” is at 5.83%.

Erie and Niagara Counties are among those in the State's “focus zone.”

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