U.S. nears 19,000 coronavirus deaths, nearly half of that in New York, NYC schools closed this year
Topics: U.S. CORONAVIRUS NEW YORK
Coronavirus deaths in the U.S. neared 19,000 on Saturday after a record-high death count Friday of more than 2,100 fatalities. But the U.S. has not yet "reached the peak" of the pandemic, Dr. Deborah Birx, coordinator of the White House coronavirus task force, said Friday.
New York City has become the epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic. The death toll in the city reached 5,065 on Friday, with the most confirmed cases and deaths concentrated in Brooklyn and Queens. There are more than 170,512 confirmed cases in New York state and at least 7,844 people have died.
New York City public schools will stay closed for the remainder of the academic year due to the spread of the coronavirus, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Saturday.
“There’s nothing easy about this decision,” the mayor said during a press briefing. The decision means that 1.1 million students in the largest school system in the country will go without routine schooling for more than three months this year.
Roughly three-quarters of the city’s public school system is comprised of low-income children who receive free or discounted meals at school. The city has struggled to lend out equipment to students and has left some school buildings open for parents to pick up food. ■