Above: The Peck Slip School, where three students have tested positive for the pandemic coronavirus Below: P.S./I.S. 276, where an three teachers are reported to be infected
A review of data from the New York State Department of Health (DOH) indicate that the spread of the pandemic coronavirus among Lower Manhattan public schools is well contained, with a total of 14 cases at five schools.
These cases were limited to P.S 234 (where two teachers and no students tested positive), P.S./I.S. 276 (three teachers and no students), I.S. 289 (one student), the Peck Slip School (three students), and Stuyvesant High School (three students).
Among six other Downtown public schools (P.S. 89, P.S. 150, the Spruce Street School, Millennium High School, the Lower Manhattan Community Middle School, and the Richard R. Green High School of Teaching), no cases were reported among students or teachers.
For the five schools that did report positive test results from September 8 through December 11, only two had such indicators in the last 14 days—a period in which one teacher at P.S. 234, along with two students and one teacher at Stuyvesant were reported to be infected. And none of the 11 public schools in Lower Manhattan reported a single new case in the seven-day period ending December 11.
These results come from 1,403 tests administered across the 11 schools, according to the DOH website, from which the total of 14 cases yields a positivity rate of slightly less than one percent.
These encouraging metrics are tempered by the sporadic scheduling of the tests. The DOH website notes that five schools have tested their students and teachers only once. Among these are Stuyvesant High School (which tested on October 14), I.S. 289 (October 15), the Lower Manhattan Community Middle School and the Richard R. Green High School of Teaching (October 30), and Millennium High School (November 6).
Stuyvesant High School, where two students and one teacher have tested positive for COVID-19, according to the State Department of Health
The most intensively surveilled Downtown school was P.S. 234, which has administered six sets of tests, beginning on October 19, and most recently on December 10. The school examined most recently overall was P.S./I.S. 276, which administered tests on December 11. The local school with the oldest data is Stuyvesant High School, which (as noted above) most recently tested students and staff two months ago, on October 14. This is likely due to the fact that, according to DOH data, no Stuyvesant students are currently attending class in that school’s building (located on Chambers Street), although roughly three-quarters of its 276 teachers are reporting to work there each day. (The discrepancy between three cases at Stuyvesant during the last 14 days, despite the fact that no students are in the building and the school most recently testing in mid-October is attributable to DOH data also including results from tests administered outside the school.)
The numbers paint a similar picture at Millennium High School, where the DOH says only one of 452 students is currently reporting to the building (on South William Street) for classes.
The Downtown school with the highest percentage of students attending in-person classes appears to be P.S. 89, located on Warren Street, where 277 out of 360 pupils (or roughly 77 percent of the total enrollment) are showing up each day.
The Not-So-Okay Corral
DOT Overrules Community Concerns about Delivery Bike Facility in Tribeca
The City’s Department of Transportation has ignored calls from Community Board 1 to address concerns of Tribeca residents before installing a cargo bike corral on Warren Street (between West and Greenwich Streets), to facilitate the use of powered bicycles when making grocery deliveries. To read more…
Poster House is thrilled to partner with Robert Wilson, Art Director at Bowne & Co., of the South Street Seaport Museum, for an evening dedicated to the early history of letterpress printing in New York City. In this presentation, he will explore a number of production processes that built the visual landscape of New York, with special attention paid to the typographic trends of broadsides and handbills from the 19th century. At Bowne & Co., artifacts from the museum’s working collection are used in a contemporary practice, preserving the skills and traditions of 19th-century letterpress printing. Join us on journey of lessons learned at the press, questions warmly welcomed! $3.00
Life and Death in the Hudson River
Over the past few days, downtowners have witnessed extremes of life and death in the Hudson River—a humpback whale exploring the waterway, surfacing, flipping its tail as if to wave at the Statue of Liberty; and many dead fish floating at the river’s edge and in North Cove, with more expiring around them, frantically gulping for air at the surface.
Are these sightings linked? We checked with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC).
I read with interest your article about the recent die-off of menhaden in the Hudson River. I doubt that low dissolved oxygen is the cause, if only because the amount of oxygen in the water should increase as the temperature drops.
There are two water monitoring stations in Hudson River Park that sample the water every 15 minutes. The one at Pier 25 is often on the blink, and is currently not operating. The one at Pier 84 is fairly reliable, and is currently working:
The attached chart shows the dissolved oxygen at Pier 84 for the past two months. Observe that it has slowly risen. The turbidity and water temperature look fine, but the salinity is down a bit – see the second chart
President, Downtown Boathouse
Thanks, Graeme. You’re right that oxygen levels in water should rise as the temperature goes down. But something is making these fish come to the surface and gasp. According to Riverkeeper, dying fish have been documented for more than a week, in the Hudson River from the Battery to Garrison, New York, and all the way out to the North Fork of Long Island.
Scientists from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) are currently performing necropsies on the fish to find out what killed them. Besides higher water temperatures—which was blamed as the cause of a fish die-off in the area this past July—what else would cause oxygen levels to drop? The culprit may be pollution. Excessive bacteria—which could originate from sewage overflows or other toxic spills into the water—consume and deplete oxygen.
The Broadsheet will publish an update on the cause of the fish die-off as soon as we hear from the DEC.
Santa’s Secret Helpers
Imagine what it’s like to be a kid who, for some reason, isn’t on Santa’s list. Now, just imagine what a huge impact you can make in the life of a child and their parents by being their secret Santa.
Stockings with Care, a charity based in Lower Manhattan, steps in to help when parents cannot provide Christmas gifts for their children, so no child is left out. But the organization, which has benefited over 40,000 children since 1992, needs your help. The parents give the gifts that donors (such as you) provide to the child, preserving their dignity and connection, while ensuring the gifts received are the ones the child wished for. Stockings with Care has created five easy ways to contribute.
The Church Street School for Music and Art will continue a decades-long Downtown tradition (albeit, in virtual form, as a concession to COVID-19) by offeringGingerbread House Decorating Kits (priced at $85), now through Christmas week.
Each take home kit includes one homemade gingerbread house, a variety of candy, freshly made icing, and one foiled round to set your house up on. In addition to offering great holiday fun, this program is one of the most important fundraisers for the highly regarded non-profit institution that has brought enrichment to the lives of generations of Lower Manhattan kids.
Two separate residential towers planned for the Financial District are suffering from the local real estate slowdown. In developments first reported by the online real estate journal, YIMBY, the building now under construction at 161 Maiden Lane has undergone removal of pieces of its facade in recent weeks (the only recent activity on the otherwise-stalled project), while construction equipment has been removed from 45 Broad Street, which is the site of a planned 1,115 foot residential tower.
557 – Constantinople is severely damaged by an earthquake.
1780 – Alexander Hamilton marries Elizabeth Schuyler at the Schuyler Mansion in Albany, New York.
1819 – Alabama becomes the 22nd U.S. state.
1900 – Quantum mechanics: Max Planck presents a theoretical derivation of his black-body radiation law.
1903 – The Wright brothers make their first attempt to fly with the Wright Flyer at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.
1911 – Roald Amundsen’s team, comprising himself, Olav Bjaaland, Helmer Hanssen, Sverre Hassel, and Oscar Wisting, becomes the first to reach the South Pole.
1940 – Plutonium (specifically Pu-238) is first isolated at Berkeley, California.
1962 – NASA’s Mariner 2 becomes the first spacecraft to fly by Venus.
1972 – Apollo program: Eugene Cernan is the last person to walk on the moon, after he and Harrison Schmitt complete the third and final extravehicular activity of the Apollo 17 mission.
1985 – Wilma Mankiller takes office as the first woman elected to serve as Principal Chief of the Cherokee Nation.
2012 – Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting: Twenty-eight people, including the gunman, are killed in Sandy Hook, Connecticut.
A mere 59 years after the Wright brothers’ first successful flight, Mariner 2 was launched on August 27, 1962. Its mission was to conduct a successful planetary encounter with neighbor Venus and take a closer look at its atmosphere. Mariner 2 also measured solar wind, a constant stream of charged particles flying outward from the sun.
1631 – Anne Conway, English philosopher and author (d. 1679)
1908 – Morey Amsterdam, American actor, singer, and screenwriter (d. 1996)
1911 – Spike Jones, American singer and bandleader (d. 1965)
1922 – Don Hewitt, American journalist/producer, created 60 Minutes (d. 2009)
1077 – Agnes of Poitou, Holy Roman Empress and regent (b. c. 1025)
1311 – Margaret of Brabant, German queen consort (b. 1276)
1799 – George Washington, First President of the United States (b. 1732)
1873 – Louis Agassiz, Swiss-American zoologist and geologist (b. 1807)
1943 – John Harvey Kellogg, American physician and businessman, co-invented corn flakes (b. 1852)
1980 – Elston Howard, American baseball player and coach (b. 1929)
1985 – Roger Maris, American baseball player and coach (b. 1934)
1989 – Andrei Sakharov, Russian physicist and activist, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1921)
2006 – Ahmet Ertegun, Turkish-American composer and producer, co-founded Atlantic Records (b. 1923)
2013 – Peter O’Toole, British-Irish actor (b. 1932)
2014 – Bess Myerson, American model, activist, game show panelist and television personality; Miss America 1945 (b. 1924)
2015 – Lillian Vernon, German-American businesswoman and philanthropist, founded the Lillian Vernon Company (b. 1927)