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Mayor Bill de Blasio. Photo: EuropaNewswire/Gado/Getty Images

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Monday that New York City's 488 public high schools will reopen for some in-person classes on March 22, after months of distance learning.

Why it matters: It's a key pandemic milestone for the biggest public school system in the country, which is made up largely of low-income and minority students, according to the New York Times.

The state of play: New York City reopened its public schools for the first time in the fall, but switched to fully remote learning in November after the city's COVID-19 positivity rate surged.

  • Elementary schools partially reopened in December and middle schools in February. Officials focused on younger students first because online learning is often more difficult for them.
  • About half of the city's 488 public high schools will now offer full-time instruction for the majority of their students, while the other half of schools will have hybrid instruction.
  • The city will also reinstate high school sports for all students — with face masks required at all times.

Between the lines: Students who opted-in to remote learning last fall will be allowed to remain home. Only 55,000 out of the city's 282,000 high school students are expected to return to in-person learning this month, per the New York Times.

Go deeper

Chauvin trial leaves cities, activists across America on edge

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

The impact of the Derek Chauvin trial is reverberating far beyond the walls of the downtown Minneapolis courtroom.

The state of play: With the trial set to enter its third week, activists across America are watching the proceedings unfold with heavy skepticism that what they perceive as justice will be served.

Felix Salmon, author of Capital
2 hours ago - Economy & Business

The dispiriting housing boom

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

It's a discouraging scene: Bidding wars, soaring prices, and fears that homeownership is becoming out of reach for millions of Americans. We're in a housing frenzy, driven by a massive shortage of inventory — and no one seems to be happy about it.

Why it matters: Not all bubbles burst. Real estate, in particular, tends to rise in value much more easily than it falls. Besides, says National Association of Realtors chief economist Lawrence Yun, this "is not a bubble. It is simply lack of supply."

Updated 6 hours ago - World

China's COVID vaccines have low efficacy rates, official says

China Centers for Disease Control director Gao Fu at a March event in Beijing, China. Photo: Han Haidan/China News Service via Getty Images

The Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention's director said Saturday authorities are considering mixing COVID-19 vaccines because the country's domestically made doses "don't have very high protection rates," per AP.

Why it matters: The remarks by the Gao Fu at a news conference in the southwestern city of Chengdumark mark the first time a Chinese health official has spoken publicly about the low efficacy of vaccines made in China.