N.Y.C. will again delay the start of personal lessons for most students.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio once again delayed the start of most one-to-one classes in public schools Thursday, admitting the system still does not fully overcome the many barriers it faced in returning children during the coronavirus pandemic would have.
The abrupt announcement was a blow to the mayor's efforts to make New York City one of the few major cities in the country to host face-to-face courses. And it threatened to deepen concern and confusion over whether the mayor and his government mistreated the reopening by posting deadlines and then postponing it.
Rather than a triumphant return to school for all students eager to study in person from Monday, the city will continue to move students back to the classrooms, starting with the youngest children who will report to schools next week. Students in Pre-K grades and students with advanced special needs will return on Monday.
Primary schools will open on September 29 and middle and high schools on October 1.
All other students start the school year remotely on Monday.
The mayor said at a press conference Thursday morning that after hours of discussion with union leaders who represent the town's school principals and teachers, he had decided to reopen it gradually.
These union leaders have been warning for weeks that schools may not reopen for a myriad of reasons, from poor ventilation in some aging buildings to a severe staffing crisis that the school directors union estimates could leave town and require up to 10,000 educators.
Mr de Blasio said the teacher shortage was his main reason for the further delay in personal lessons.
"We are doing this to ensure that all of the standards we have set can be met," de Blasio said Thursday morning, adding that the reopening plan was derived through an examination of "best practices around the world".
Over 40 percent of parents have already opted out of face-to-face tuition, and that number is likely to increase. This reflects the families' deep frustration with the city's reopening efforts and skepticism about school readiness.
Biotech company Moderna released a 135-page document Thursday detailing how it is conducting the late-stage of its coronavirus vaccine and how it will determine safety and effectiveness.
The document suggests that the initial analysis of the trial data may not be done until late December and that there may not be enough information to determine if the vaccine is working. Subsequent analyzes, which are planned for March and May, provide more of an answer.
The company is at the forefront of the global race to manufacture a vaccine against the pandemic. Moderna's vaccine uses genetic material from the virus, known as mRNA, to induce cells in the body to make a fragment of the virus that trains the immune system to fight off infection.
The vaccine is currently in a Phase 3 study that has included more than 25,000 of the intended 30,000 volunteers. Dr. Tal Zaks, Moderna's chief medical officer, said registration should be completed in the next few weeks.
About 28 percent of the participants are blacks, Latinos, or other groups who are particularly affected by the disease. Diverse enrollment was seen as essential.
Half of the participants will receive the vaccine and half will receive a placebo shot made from salt water. Two exposures are required four weeks apart. Participants will then be monitored to see if they develop symptoms of Covid-19 and will test positive for the virus.
The vaccine side effects are also tracked, with participants recording symptoms in electronic diaries, taking their own temperatures, visiting clinics, and receiving regular calls to assess their condition. The vaccine can cause temporary reactions such as arm pain, fever, chills, muscle and joint pain, fatigue, and headache.
To determine the effectiveness of the vaccine, Covid-19 cases are only counted if they occur two weeks after the second shot. Some patients are already two weeks after the second shot, but Dr. Zaks said he did not know whether study participants were still infected with Covid-19.
A total of 151 cases – split between the vaccine and placebo groups – are enough to determine whether the vaccine is 60 percent effective. The Food and Drug Administration has set the bar at 50 percent.
New state unemployment insurance entitlements fell last week and stood at 790,000 after adjusting for seasonal factors, the Labor Department reported Thursday.
The weekly balance is roughly four times what it was before the coronavirus pandemic shut down many businesses in March. Seasonally adjusted, 860,000 applications were submitted compared to the previous week.
Six months into the stalemate, the American economy remains on shaky ground and layoffs are at an extraordinarily high level by historical standards.
The situation was exacerbated by the failure of Congress to agree on new federal aid for the unemployed.
A weekly $ 600 surcharge set in March that had kept many families afloat expired in late July. The provisional replacement commissioned by President Trump last month has experienced delays in processing in some states and would only take a few weeks.
"The job market has stalled," said Scott Anderson, chief economist at Bank of the West in San Francisco. "We are facing more headwinds, especially with the stimulus package that was delayed in Congress."
New entitlements to pandemic unemployment benefits, a federal emergency program for freelance workers, independent contractors, and others not eligible for regular unemployment benefits, totaled 659,000, according to the Department of Labor.
India reported 97,894 new virus cases on Wednesday, the highest one-day increase to date, bringing the 7-day average of new daily cases to 93,199. With 5.1 million confirmed cases, or 378 per 100,000 people, India has the second highest number of cases in the world after the United States, according to a New York Times database.
India entered a strict lockdown in March that was viewed as largely successful in containing the virus. But the country began lifting restrictions in May and felt strong economic pressure to continue reopening even if cases exploded.
The economic devastation caused by the pandemic has endangered much of India's aspirations. Previously, India's improving economy had lifted millions out of poverty. The country built modern megacities and garnered geopolitical firepower. It aimed to give its people a bourgeois lifestyle, to update its Military and are becoming a regional superpower that could one day rival China, Asia's greatest success story.
The World Health Organization warned on Thursday of a "very serious" recurrence of the coronavirus across Europe, but said the transmission could be contained through local rather than national measures.
“We have a very serious situation ahead of us. The weekly cases have now exceeded the reported cases when the pandemic peaked in Europe for the first time in March, "Hans Kluge, Regional Director for Europe at W.H.O., told reporters.
The number of virus cases has increased by more than 10 percent in more than half of European countries in the past two weeks, said Dr. Smart. The number of cases has doubled in seven countries.
"While these numbers reflect broader testing, they also show alarming transfer rates," he said. The region has recorded at least 220,000 deaths from the virus.
"The response to the crisis has been very effective when action is taken quickly and decisively, but the virus has been merciless when partisanship and disinformation prevailed," he said, calling for a coherent joint effort by European countries and more effective communication to combat the crisis Growing public fatigue with recommended measures to contain the spread of the virus.
These measures, not natural causes, had led to a decline in Covid-19 cases across Europe over the summer and an increase in infections as countries loosen controls and open their economies was predictable, added Dr. Kluge added.
"In many cases, you can include these tips locally," he said. "With that in mind, I would hope national bans can be avoided as much as possible."
The UK Health Secretary said Thursday that almost two million people in the north-east of England would be unable to meet with anyone outside their homes as a result of the recent local lockdowns in the country. Prime Minister Boris Johnson also warned that the only way to be sure the country could enjoy the winter vacation was to "be tough now" after saying the government was doing "everything in our power" to bring about one Avoid nationwide lockdown.
For many US companies, staying open means staying open Renegotiation of the rent.
In the United States, many companies – particularly music clubs, gyms, restaurants, bars, and others that have had to close due to the pandemic – are trying to figure out how or if they can get out of debt. For many this is not possible without concessions from the landlord.
After months of closings, many business owners are too heavily indebted to survive without concessions or deferrals. Nearly 73,000 businesses have closed for good since the pandemic spread across the U.S., according to an analysis by Yelp. And the fate of many who stay open is increasingly dependent on their ability to renegotiate their leases.
A recent survey by Alignable, a social network for small business owners, found that a quarter of respondents had defaulted on their rent since the onset of hold orders. For companies in the fitness and beauty industry, that number rose to almost 40 percent.
The problem could get worse now that an initial flood of federal aid has dried up and a sharply divided Congress has been unable to agree on further aid measures. The government's $ 525 billion paycheck protection program gave more than five million companies a one-time injection of cash to pay for workers and other expenses, including rent, but most beneficiaries have now spent the money.
According to Datex Property Solutions, a software company that collects data on thousands of its clients' retail properties nationwide, retail rental income fell to just 54 percent of total debt in April. Collections had recovered to nearly 80 percent by August, but some tenants, such as movie theaters, clothing stores, hair salons, and gyms, were much further behind.
The number of Hasidic Jewish pilgrims stopped due to virus travel restrictions on the Belarus-Ukraine border has increased significantly in recent days, Ukrainian officials said Thursday.
The buildup along the border has become one of the more dramatic aftermaths of virus travel bans. Ukraine closed its borders last month as cases increased in the country, in part to halt the annual pilgrimage to Uman, the tomb of Rabbi Nachman, founder of the Breslow branch of the Hasidic movement.
The Ukrainian authorities feared that the pilgrimage, which usually attracts tens of thousands of devotees during the Jewish New Year, would turn into a super-spreading event. Ukraine has reported 166,694 cases, including 20,183 in the last seven days as of Thursday. The number of cases is 374 cases per 100,000 people.
By Thursday at least 2,500 pilgrims had gathered at border crossings, Jonathan Binyamin Markovitch, the chief rabbi of Kiev, told local media.
Mr. Markovitch said most were from Israel, but some were also from the United States and France. They traveled to Belarus, where the borders remain open, and then made their way to the closed border with Ukraine in hopes that it would open.
Some pilgrims who arrived in Uman before the border was closed have tested positive for the virus. The city's mayor said the results of 10 out of 460 pilgrims tested were positive.
Although the Israeli authorities had also supported Ukraine's decision to stop the pilgrimage, the pilgrims arrived at a border crossing on Monday afternoon. Hundreds of men and boys stayed in the buffer area between two border checkpoints and slept outdoors.
The virus disrupted a pilgrimage that began after Rabbi Nachman's death in 1811, was suspended for decades in the Soviet era, and resumed in the late 1980s amid a political thaw in the Soviet Union.
In other developments around the world:
About a quarter of the total of 41,000 cases in the Czech Republic were reported last week as the country battles one of the fastest growing outbreaks in Europe. To avoid a complete lockdown, the government has reintroduced targeted restrictive measures, including a ban on indoor gatherings for more than 10 people, mandatory indoor masking, and shortening opening times for bars and restaurants. Most children have to wear masks to school too. The government lifted the restrictions before the summer, and some believe the country is now paying the price.
A small group of wealthy countries have bought more than half of the expected supply of the most promising Coronavirus vaccinationsBritish charity group Oxfam said on Thursday. In the final phase of clinical trials, supply agreements for 5.3 billion doses of five vaccines were announced. More than 2.7 billion cans, or 51 percent, have been bought by countries like Australia, the United Kingdom, Israel, Japan, Switzerland and the United States, and the European Union, which together make up about 13 percent of the world's population. Even if all five vaccines are approved, their combined production capacity of six billion doses is enough for only about three billion people, since each person will likely need two doses. That means nearly two-thirds of the world's population wouldn't get a vaccine until at least 2022, Oxfam said.
Scott Morrison Prime Minister of Australia said Thursday that it plans to increase the number of people who can enter the country each week by about 2,000 from the end of next week until state governments approve more hotel rooms for quarantine. Mr Morrison's government imposed a weekly cap of 4,000 arrivals in July amid a second wave of infections and more than 25,000 Australians are still stranded overseas. A group of major airlines serving Australia said Wednesday that some Australians under the current caps may not be able to return home until next year.
South Africa will reopen its borders to most countries on October 1, President Cyril Ramaphosa said Wednesday as the country prepares to relax other restrictions amid an improving virus situation.
New Jersey Governor Philip D. Murphy, a Democrat, partnered with lawmakers Thursday to announce a budget contract that will provide a higher tax rate for residents who earn more than $ 1 million a year.
The agreement also includes a recurring discount of $ 500 for families with at least one child and an annual income of less than $ 150,000 per year for couples and $ 75,000 for single parents.
Planned by Republicans and some business leaders as a risky move that could lead to an exodus of the state's richest residents, the move comes amid a growing national debate over whether to raise taxes on the rich to address a growing income gap close .
In the face of a financial crisis caused by the urgent health needs of the pandemic and months of business shutdowns, lawmakers agreed to increase the tax rate on profits over $ 1 million from 8.97 percent to 10.75 percent. Individuals who earned more than $ 5 million were already taxed at the higher tax rate.
The deal underscores the changing political climate and the recognition that the rich may need to do more to help the state recover as so many residents are unemployed and struggling to support their families. More than 1.5 million residents have requested unemployment benefits since Mr Murphy put a lockdown to stop the virus from spreading, which has resulted in the deaths of more than 16,000 New Jersey residents.
Some of the largest companies in the United States, including Microsoft, Facebook, and Google, have tried to support their parents by offering paid time off and subsidized childcare. Other companies have gotten creative, hosting online camps or hiring teachers, and turning their empty offices into remote schools for employees' children.
According to a survey of 1,081 parents by Morning Consult for the New York Times, more than three-quarters of working parents said their jobs did not provide additional free time or money for childcare. Highly qualified and high-earning workers are much more likely to receive a leave of absence, the option of flexible working hours or subsidized childcare or tutoring.
During the pandemic, Congress approved 12 weeks of partial paid leave for parents whose kindergartens or daycare centers were closed. However, at least half of the workers were ineligible and the crisis lasted much longer than the covered leave.
Many companies cannot afford to offer additional benefits. Other employers need to rethink care benefits for the pandemic because circumstances are as diverse as workers normally need.
According to surveys, flexibility is the most common benefit offered by employers. 86 percent of the 1,087 HR professionals surveyed by the Society of Human Resource Management said they offer flexible working hours. Half of working parents in the Morning Consult for The Times survey said their employers let them postpone their working hours.
Less than 10 percent of employers offer childcare subsidies. However, money for babysitters or teachers can be more valuable to parents than flexibility or even free time. Although a parent typically needs limited time at home for something like the birth of a baby, children now require long-term care or daily personal help with online schooling.
An Idaho pastor is hospitalized after defying a mask mandate.
The pastor of a Protestant church in northern Idaho was hospitalized with Covid-19 for about two weeks after defying a county mask mandate and holding face-to-face services.
The case is the latest example of an ecclesiastical community confronting the disease after downplaying its severity. Recently, a Maine wedding led by a pastor who criticized restrictions has been linked to the deaths of seven people.
Paul Van Noy, the pastor of the Candlelight Christian Fellowship, a large congregation in Coeur d & # 39; Alene, Idaho, a city of about 52,000 residents, has been treated in intensive care and has started to recover on Monday. Mr Van Noy's wife, Brenda, also contracted the virus and was not hospitalized. Five church workers have also fallen ill, a church ministerial coordinator told The Spokesman Review. It is unclear whether other cases are related to parishioners.
According to a Times database, there have been 2,400 cases and 33 deaths in Kootenai County, including Coeur d'Alene. In the seven days ending Wednesday, 98 new cases were reported.
Mr Van Noy had posted misleading information about the effectiveness of masks on his Facebook page and wrote on July 17th: "It has been clearly and scientifically proven that many masks do not help prevent the transmission of Covid-19."
On Wednesday, Dr. Robert R. Redfield, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a Senate panel that masks are "the single most important and effective public health tool we have in fighting the pandemic."
"May we defend our freedoms so that they don't go away quickly," wrote Van Not. He added, "We will not be required to wear masks or allow those who wish to wear them."
The church holds personal services and other events throughout the week, the church website states. A church ministerial coordinator told The Spokesman Review that the church had undergone a thorough cleanup and was closed for two weeks.
The University of Michigan student strike has ended.
University of Michigan graduates returned to work Thursday morning after an eight-day strike to call for more protection from the coronavirus during class, as well as increased support with childcare and other concessions.
The Graduate Employees' Organization strike, one of the country's most violent tuition conflicts during the pandemic, disrupted campus less than a month after students returned to class. According to court records, around 90 percent of the university's students are taking a course that is wholly or partially taught by a doctoral student.
In settling the strike, the university said it had "put in place a stronger process to address health and safety concerns" for graduate students working on campus and would allow graduate lecturers to appeal any decision they make lets work on campus. So-called "temporary improvements" have also been made to student childcare subsidies.
The vote to end the strike, which began September 8, was 1,074 to 239, with 66 abstentions. The union said the university had made an offer "with substantial progress towards a safe and equitable campus".
Michigan state law does not allow public employees to strike. The university had gone to court seeking an injunction to end what was known as an illegal strike and the union faced possible financial penalties.
In other developments in the United States:
President Trump on Wednesday publicly proposed the director of the C.D.C. after Dr. Redfield had told a Senate committee that a vaccine would not be generally available until the middle of next year. "I think he made a mistake saying that," Trump told reporters. "It's just wrong information." A vaccine would "go to the general public immediately," stressed the president, and "under no circumstances will it be as late as the doctor said." Mr. Trump also diminished the usefulness of wearing masks, which Dr. Redfield had referred to as "the most important and powerful public health tool we have to fight the pandemic".
The University of Georgia said Wednesday that it would not be possible to hold on-campus polls at a student center this fall amid concerns about long lines and "insufficient indoor space" for social distancing. It said it would provide a shuttle to other voting locations, and other locations could be made available for personal voting with the consent of the state. Critics noted that the university's soccer team did not cancel the season opener on October 3, but the university said the game would be held in an open-air stadium with "significantly reduced capacity".
At an event for Hillsdale College in Michigan on Wednesday, Attorney General William P. Barr likened stays at home to centuries of slave labor in the United States. "Aside from slavery, which was another form of restraint, this is the greatest encroachment on civil liberties in American history," he said. Mr Barr was an early and vocal critic of government efforts to prevent large gatherings during the first wave of the April pandemic, particularly those that affected large congregations in churches.
Governor David Ige of Hawaii On Wednesday it said that travelers arriving from abroad will no longer have to be quarantined for 14 days from October 15, provided they can provide evidence of a negative coronavirus test within 72 hours of their departure was carried out. Travelers who arrive while their test results are pending must remain in quarantine until they are received. The quarantine requirement, which was introduced in March, has devastated Hawaii's crucial tourism sector, and efforts to lift it have already been postponed twice.
The reporting was written by Peter Baker, Nick Bruce, Stacy Cowley and Hana de Goeij. Elizabeth Dias, Sydney Ember, Emma G. Fitzsimmons, Jeffrey Gettleman, Denise Grady, and Anemona Hartocollis, Jennifer Jett, Alex Marshall, Claire Cain Miller, Claire Moses, Anna Schaverien, Nelson D. Schwartz, Christopher F. Schütze, Eliza Shapiro, Daniel E. Slotnik, Katie Thomas, Maria Varenikova and Sameer Yasir.