Administrators from schools ranging from Saint Ann’s in Brooklyn to Montessori locations warned of ongoing developmental problems related to masking.
“We know firsthand that younger kids face serious drawbacks while masking, despite the limited public health benefit, including negative impacts on learning, social, and speech development,” the letter states.
The educators argue that COVID-19 risks for children are low.
“According to the City, State, and CDC’s data, children under 4 are at an exceedingly low risk of COVID illness, with extremely low mortality rates,” they argue in the letter.
The push comes after Adams announced a rollback in COVID mandates in the city, including no longer requiring most students to wear face coverings — except for those ages 4 and under.
Adams has stated that the mask mandate for younger kids is still necessary because they aren’t eligible for COVID vaccines.
Hizzoner has stressed in recent days that the requirement is not indefinite and will end in the near future.
The flashpoint issue drew roughly 100 parents and kids to a City Hall protest Monday where participants demanded an end to masking the city’s youngest.
In their letter, the early education leaders contended that most countries do not require masks for kids under five.
“Since you understand and often discuss the need to expand early childhood education and consistently advocate for investment in programs like ours, we urge you to reconsider the continued masking requirement for our youngest children,” the letter concludes.
Adams made masks optional for kids 5 and over in city schools beginning this week.
Some students have opted to keep their faces covered, while others have abandoned masks in light of the new policy.