As the province enters a new, intense period of lockdown, Quebec schools are getting new rules too.

Calling schools his top priority, Premier François Legault made clear that they're staying open even as many other institutions and sectors close.

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For me, schools are the priority.

Premier François Legault

The opening of primary schools is still planned for January 11, but there will be more mask-wearing. 

Masks will be mandatory in "corridors and common areas." Grade five and six students will have to wear them in class, too.  

Secondary schools, meanwhile, will open on January 18 with mandatory in-class mask-wearing.

The government plans to distribute two masks per day to every secondary school student and teacher.

Across the province, "recreational or sports activities will now have to be limited to the family bubble" and inside sports activities will be banned, according to a press release.

But there will be an exception for "physical education classes and special programs in school settings."

Municipal libraries will still be open to students as of January 11.

"This measure will allow young people who do not have Internet access at home to have access to it," the government website reads.

"Educational childcare services" will stay open.

The government also promises that Minister of Education Jean-François Roberge will announce more "measures to help students succeed at school, reorganize exams and provide additional mental health assistance."

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