NEW YORK - When hundreds of thousands of New York City school students finished off the school year in June, it was with hopes that when they returned in September, perhaps their masks could finally be gone.
But now, with the Delta variant surging nationwide, the panic among parents is back.
"It grips me with anxiety every single night and every single day," said Natalya Murakhver, a mother of two NYC public school students. "What happened to the fact that we've known for over a year that school is the safest place to be? There is no evidence that children spread this, are affected by it."
Murakhver said she thought her children would get a normal school year in September, but on Tuesday, the CDC announced that all students in grades K-12 should wear masks, regardless of vaccination status.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said Wednesday that schools could become "super spreaders" this fall.
Now, schools across the nation are considering reinstituting certain safety protocols.
Mayor Bill de Blasio continues to say that all kids will be back in class this fall, despite critics saying that he has no plan. Some, like City Councilman Mark Treyger are calling for a full remote option to remain in place.
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"We need to give families the option and the flexibility to make a decision," Treyger said.
The Department of Education tells us that all students and staff will be masked up and are still expected to return this fall with updated safety protocols expected in the coming weeks.