New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has announced a plan to encourage outdoor learning when schools restart next month.
"We want to give schools the option to do as much outdoors as they can," Xinhua news agency quoted de Blasio as saying at a briefing on Monday.
Principals of the city's 1,700-plus public schools would be asked to submit plans for outdoor learning either in their own schoolyards or in parks or streets near their schools, he said.
All public, private and charter schools are encouraged to use outdoor space.
Any school that applies by Friday will have a response next week, according to the Mayor.
"The focus has been on health and safety," he said.
"We've created a new gold standard. We've combined them into one strategy for safety for all."
New York City Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza said he would work with the city departments of transportation and parks to make the approval process "as non-bureaucratic as possible".