May 25, 2024


Technology and Age

A Letter from the Deputy Chancellor

A Letter from the Deputy Chancellor


Dear Colleagues:

Aside from withholding as much money as we possibly can from funding schools, the safety of our students and staff is our absolute top priority. 

As such, we are advising you that the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) has issued a universal indoor masking recommendation for all indoor settings, including schools and daycare centers, due to the current high rates of flu and other respiratory conditions. 

As always, we sort of follow the guidance of our health experts.  We’re not gonna go crazy and buy air purifiers with actual HEPA filters, but you know. I mean, they say you should do this, and we they may just be right. At the very least, we don’t want to take any responsibility if they’re right and we aren’t. Therefore, based on the recommendation of our partners at DOHMH, we are encouraging every student and staff member to mask up as we head into the winter season.

Of course, we’re not requiring it. so hey, if you feel like coming unmasked, go right ahead. Hey, if you want to spread COVID, RSV, or just the good old flu, go right ahead. Typhoid, tuberculosis, bubonic plague, or whatever, go right ahead. We’re good with that. After all, we encouraged masks. 


Doubtless if you’re a teacher you’ll understand. Perhaps one day you encourage your students do the homework, rather than requiring it. Sounds good, right?. If you’re highly effective, you’ll get 100% compliance. If you don’t, we’ll give you a crap rating, and good luck fighting that. And I know this well, because I’m the frigging First Deputy Chancellor, and I’ve already made up my mind you’re guilty. And no, I never taught a day in my life. 

Wanna make something of it? Feeling lucky, punks? 

I didn’t think so. 

So don’t come bitching to us if you get sick. We encouraged everyone to not come unmasked, and we are not responsible if you come in and get sick from someone who was unmasked either. 

All schools and offices are equipped with masks. Not medical masks. Not masks that actually protect you. More like the kind of masks you get on Ebay three bucks for a hundred. Of course, in a special deal with one of the mayor’s close relatives or girlfriends (Who can keep track?), we managed to negotiate a special deal of a hundred bucks for three. And for those of you who wonder why we can’t fund schools, it’s important we make deals like this. Otherwise, how would we get gigs like mine where you go to gala luncheons and write staff emails three times a year, if that? Beats the hell out of working. 

As a reminder, masks should cover the nose and the mouth, resting snugly above the nose, below the mouth, and on the sides of the face. But if they aren’t, we don’t care. It’s only a recommendation.

To further encourage everyone to stay masked, we’ve decided to restrict your use of Teacher’s Choice to buy them. This is part of our comprehensive program to serve you better by serving you less.

We also continue to encourage everyone to stay up-to-date with all vaccinations, including flu and COVID. But if you don’t, who cares? No skin off my apple. 

Principals: A family-facing update about masking recommendations is being prepared to backpack home and will be shared soon. We’ll recommend that the students wear masks, and if they don’t, we’ll rate you ineffective, just like those teachers. Also, you’d better not push the students too hard to wear masks, or we’ll bring you up on charges. If convicted, you’ll have to leave your positions, go to Tweed every day, and do Whatever It Is We Do There for the rest of your professional career.

If you have questions, please keep them to yourselves. It’s holiday season, and we have super-spreader parties to plan. There’s no way we’re gonna tamp down our big fun by wearing masks. Still, we recommend you do.

Thank you for helping us keep everyone safe and healthy as we enter 2023! Lord knows we aren’t gonna do it!
Dan Weisberg
First Deputy Chancellor