After weeks of pressure from public health and elected officials, Governor Charlie Baker has announced that Massachusetts is putting new restrictions into place to slow the spread of the coronavirus. The restrictions come as the city of Framingham continues to see a rapid rise in coronavirus cases, which has prompted Framingham Public Schools to go fully remote starting on Monday. GBH Morning Edition host Joe Mathieu spoke with Framingham Mayor Yvonne Spicer about the latest state rollbacks and how she's encouraging residents to slow the spread of the virus in the community. The transcript below has been edited for clarity.

Joe Mathieu: So you've said that each city cannot do this alone, and based on the caseloads that we're seeing, that rings true. Are you encouraged by this latest move by the governor?

Mayor Yvonne Spicer: I'm encouraged, but I also say we need to evaluate it and look to see is there more that we can be doing? Can we identify particular clusters? And so I'm encouraged by the move, but it may not be enough.

Mathieu: But you have said it's not just about rolling back reopening plans, that we need to get creative and we could use some creative solutions right now. Have you been talking about new ideas in Framingham?

Spicer: Well, here in Framingham, not only are we doing more testing, we're contact tracing, the messaging is constant with our residents about wearing face covering, hand washing, social distancing and also limiting gatherings. If people don't live in your households, don't be gathering with them. Those are the messages that we're consistently putting out, and we're just hoping people will take heed to them.

Mathieu: Well, let's get to that because we keep hearing that a lot of the spread is, in fact, coming from small gatherings, house parties, of course, Thanksgiving, and now we're walking up on another set of holidays imminently. How do you get to that? This isn't restaurants and theaters we're talking about.

Spicer: You have to get to a place where people really value each other. It's really about being respectful of each other, and that's some of the messaging I've been sharing with my community. We may not be able to gather for Thanksgiving or other holidays like we normally would, but next year, if we're doing the right thing, we probably will be able to gather. And I need everybody to cooperate. We need everyone in this working together.

Watch: Mayor Spicer on the $18,000 in fines administered by the city for those found violating social gathering restrictions

Mathieu: Well, Mayor, you're in charge of one of the biggest cities in the state — in New England, for that matter — and I know you just opened another Stop the Spread testing site in Framingham. Is that helping to ease the difficulty of getting a test? Some of these lines have been epic lately.

Spicer: Yes. That is one of our hopes [for] the new site, which opened on Monday. They're ramping up and gearing up, and the goal is to eventually do roughly about 1,000 tests per day by appointment only. So we're grateful to have that site. And for the rest of this week, we have the other two sites and we're still working out how those will continue or will we just end up with the appointment-only site. But that's a work in progress.

Mathieu: I'd like to ask you about schools, Mayor. I know Monday your schools move to a full remote schedule — it was one of our top stories — with a goal of returning to expanded in-person learning by the middle of January. How many students were getting into classrooms before this was put in place, and what are the metrics you'll use to go back?

Spicer: I have to give our superintendent and the entire school committee credit for really working hard to create a phasing process that is in collaboration with our teachers and our teachers union. And we've been testing it, and it's been tested by having a community infection rate coming into the school, we have a small number of students in the schools. Also our community data; we are evaluating that [and] working very closely with the health department. And based on this surge that we're going through right now, the superintendent made the decision to roll back to remote learning, which I think was a smart move in order to maintain safety of our students, our staff, our teachers and really keep an eye on what is happening in the community in terms of modulating coronavirus in the community.

Mathieu: Mayor, I'd love to ask you about about Christmas and Hanukkah, New Year's, the holidays that are all coming up. What do you tell people when they say they want to be with their families? They want to see their mom and dad, their aunts and uncles. We just went through this with Thanksgiving, and I feel like we aren't talking about this enough as we head into these year-end holidays.

Spicer: The holidays are my favorite time of the year. It's about family, it's about reaffirming those connections with your family, and your community and friends. And this year, I'm asking people to do things differently. Have a video conference with your family members. But if folks don't live in your home, you shouldn't be gathering with them. And I know that's really, really hard for a lot of families, but I think if we're doing the preventive things now, next year we'll be able to all gather together and everybody will be at the table. So it's really about being respectful and keeping everyone safe.

Mathieu: Can I at least drop gifts off on the front step at Mom's house? Is that possible?

Spicer: Oh, most definitely.

Mathieu: I'm trying to figure out how to do this, Mayor. I don't know. It's very kind of you to join us. I know these are confusing times, but also hopeful times as we look down the road a couple of months, Mayor, and consider a very different world when we're all rolling up our sleeves for a vaccine.

Spicer: Absolutely. I'm extremely hopeful that we will get through this pandemic. I'm also optimistic about the vaccine. But once again, keeping an eye on the data, the science of the vaccine, and really looking to see how do we encourage people to, when available, take the vaccine. But even with that, we need to keep a keen eye on maintaining cautious behavior, wearing face coverings, washing hands and socially distance. The vaccine is a part of the process, but not the only thing.