Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates & Resources for Families
Page last updated at 1:30 PM 3/27/2020
At Boston School Finder, we recognize that we are in unprecedented times as our communities must adjust to radical changes to our regular ways of life as we try to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, the disease caused by coronavirus. Our mission has always been focused on centralizing easy-to-understand information for families — and remains so even in the face of the coronavirus pandemic.
We are compiling resources for families to support you during this time. This page will be continuously updated.
Click the links below to quickly navigate to:
- COVID-19 Updates
- School Updates
- Critical Support (food, financial, childcare, etc.)
- Home Learning Resources
- School Registration Updates
General Updates about Coronavirus (COVID-19)
- City of Boston
- Text BOSCOVID to 99411 to receive text alerts from the city.
- Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH)
- Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC)
- Boston Public Schools COVID-19 Updates
- COVID-19 Updates for Charter Public Schools, Private Schools & METCO
If you need medical assistance:
If you are experiencing a medical emergency, dial 9-1-1.
- For all other medical concerns, call your doctor. If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 and develop a fever and symptoms, such as cough or difficulty breathing, call your healthcare provider for medical advice.
- Read more about What To Do if You Are Sick from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website.
If you need food:
Boston Public Schools will continue to provide free breakfast and lunch meals to all Boston children; you do not have to have a child in BPS schools to access these meals. Locations will be open Monday - Friday from 8:30 AM to 11:30 AM at the schools listed here.
- Visit the Free Breakfast & Lunch Locations page for a list of BPS schools were meals can be picked up.
The City of Boston, in partnership with Project Bread, YMCA of Greater Boston, Boston Centers for Youth and Families, and other community organizations, will provide free meals to all youth and teens at various locations and times across the City.
- Visit the Map of Meal Sites page from the City of Boston for more information.
If you need additional food resources:
- Please contact Project Bread’s Food Source Hotline at (800) 645-8333.
If you need financial assistance:
If you are in need of financial support due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) either because of school closings or lost wages, Union Capital Boston is offering financial support in the form of UCB Visa gift cards. Union Capital Boston will order Visa gift cards on Friday, March 20 and take 7-10 days to arrive. They will divide the amount on each card evenly based on the amount of money raised.
- To request a gift card please complete this form, available in English and Spanish.
- To donate to the UCB COVID-19 Financial Support Fund, click here.
If you need childcare:
ALL center-based child care and family child care programs are closed as of March 23 through April 6, 2020, by order of the Governor. Exempt Emergency Child Care Programs are available, but please review the guidelines below:
- Exempt Emergency Child Care Programs: Do not contact an emergency child care program unless you require emergency, back-up, drop-in care. Priority must be given to people including but are not limited to health care workers, essential state and human service workers, COVID-19 health workers, grocery store employees, emergency response personnel, law enforcement, transportation and infrastructure workers, sanitation workers, DCF-involved families, and families living in shelters.
- To slow the spread of the coronavirus, all families should keep children out of group care settings to the greatest extent possible. Emergency Child Care Programs are for when all other non-group-care settings have been exhausted and families have no other options.
- How do I find an Exempt Emergency Child Care Program?
You can find a list of emergency drop-in childcare providers here. (Please note: this list is for the entire state of Massachusetts, not just Boston.) This list will continue to be updated as more programs are approved. Parents will be responsible for reaching out to individual programs.
- For more information, please visit the Massachusetts Department of Early Education and Care Emergency Guidance webpage.
If you have lost your job:
- If your job has been impacted by COVID-19, please visit the Massachusetts Department of Unemployment Assistance (DUA) to see if you qualify for unemployment benefits.
- If you do not qualify for Massachusetts unemployment benefits, you may qualify for Disaster Unemployment Assistance through the federal government. Please visit their website for more information.
If you need transportation:
- There have been service disruptions due to COVID-19 on public transportation in the City of Boston. Visit the MBTA website for the most current service alerts and updates.
If you need home access to the internet:
- The City of Boston has compiled several free or low-cost options available to all Boston residents here: Internet Connectivity Supports During COVID-19 Response.
If you need a computer:
- Boston Public Schools is coordinating the distribution of portable Chromebook laptop computers to BPS students who do not have consistent access to a computer at home.
- If you go to a school that is not BPS, please contact your school directly.
If you need home learning enrichment materials for your children:
- Please visit our Home Learning Resources page.
If you need ideas for activities to do with your children:
- EdNavigator will post a daily update of "One Great Thing" to do with your kids each day.
- Lunch Doodles with Mo Willems: MA-based children's book author and illustrator and Kennedy Center Artist-in-Residence offers a 30-minute live-streaming art workshop every day at 1:00 PM.
- Actor Josh Gad (who voices Olaf in Disney's Frozen) reads a children's book every night at 7:00 PM on his Twitter account.
As we receive any updates about how COVID-19 might impact ongoing school enrollment or registration processes already in progress, we'll notify families via text. Text "SCHOOL" to 33777 to get these specific school registration alerts on your phone.
- All Boston Public Schools Welcome Centers are currently closed. More information about Welcome Services' registration and assignment process for the next school year will be available in the coming days.
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