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Wu warns BPS needs to be ‘realistic’ about staffing shortages amid Omicron

A line of people waited on Allston Street for coronavirus COVID-19 testing at West End House in Allston.Suzanne Kreiter/Globe Staff

Boston Mayor Michelle Wu said Monday that the city will do everything it can to keep schools open as Omicron bears down on the region, but warned that keeping classrooms open may not be possible.

Asked by reporters about the prospect of Boston students returning to remote learning, Wu said that conversation is ongoing with the state. In-person learning is better for students, she said, before adding that the district needs to be realistic about staffing challenges.

“It becomes unmanageable at a certain point to keep classrooms staffed,” she said during a City Hall media scrum following the swearing-in of Boston city councilors.


She said Boston would do everything it would to keep schools open. City workers who can work remotely will do so for the next two weeks.

“If we can keep community transmission rates low that means that schools have a better chance,” said Wu.

She said the district has activated substitute teachers and will continue to monitor the situation, noting that 155 Boston Public Schools staff members tested positive for COVID-19 over the weekend. The district employs more than 10,000 people, according to its website.

Danny McDonald can be reached at Follow him @Danny__McDonald.