New York City teachers and school staff rallied outside the Barclays Center on Wednesday to call for mandatory COVID-19 testing, vaccinations for their students, and remote learning.
The protest was held by the “MORE” caucus of the United Federation of Teachers who believe that the Department of Education is not doing enough to prevent the virus from spreading in schools.
One of the teachers that Barely Informed spoke to said that she had three Pfizer shots and still contracted COVID, so therefore she believes that students should be required to be vaccinated as well.
Other protesters lobbied for the schools to be shut down altogether until the omicron surge dies down.
At minimum, the protesters were demanding higher quality masks for teachers and students, as well as mandatory testing.
In a statement responding to the protest, the Department of Education told News 12 that “every school is open today because our Stay Safe, Stay Open plan is working.”
“That plan ramped up testing sites, distributed 1.5 million rapid test kits to students and staff, provided all staff members with KN95 masks, and encouraged all our community members to get tested over break to identify cases. It’s the most ambitious school opening plan in the country, and it keeps our schools the safest place for New York City kids,” the statement continued.