December 1, 2020

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Hell’s Kitchen’s Beacon School Closes Due To Coronavirus Cases

HELL’S KITCHEN, NY — The Beacon School in Hell’s Kitchen was closed temporarily on Monday after multiple coronavirus cases were confirmed there, becoming the latest neighborhood school building to be shut down after reporting positive tests.

The Beacon building, at 522 West 44th St., reported at least two cases in separate classrooms on Monday, forcing both rooms to be closed through Nov. 26, according to the DOE’s map of active cases.

The department’s safety protocols force school buildings to close pending an investigation when cases are confirmed in separate classrooms within a week of each other. Buildings must stay closed for a full two weeks if a link between the positive cases cannot be determined.

No other school buildings in Hell’s Kitchen were closed as of Monday, but two neighborhood schools — the YWCA Polly Dodge Early Learning Center on 55th Street and the High School of Graphic Communication Arts on 49th Street — each had a classroom closed due to a positive test.

As of Sunday evening, 20 schools around the city were closed for 24 hours due to positive tests.

A citywide resurgence in coronavirus cases is threatening to shutter the city’s school system. As of Monday, New York’s 7-day positivity rate stood at 2.57 percent, inching closer to the 3 percent threshold that would automatically close schools.

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