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Quebec Has Tweaked Its Back-To-School Plan

Masks will be required in class in nine regions.

Staff Writer
Quebec Back-To-School Plan Tweaked Again

Officials have further revised Quebec's back-to-school plan.

With students heading back to class soon, the government will implement a number of health measures and rules to "ensure the safety of students."

First, wearing a mask will only be mandatory in primary and secondary school classrooms located in the following nine regions: Centre-du-Québec, Estrie, Lanaudière, Laurentides, Laval, Mauricie, Montérégie, Montreal and Outaouais.

In these regions, mask-wearing will be required "inside the school, either in class, at daycare, in common areas and when students are travelling on school transport," according to a press release.

Students in the following eight regions won't have to wear masks in class, but will have to wear masks in common areas and when moving through the school building or on school transport: Bas-Saint-Laurent, Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean, Abitibi-Témiscamingue, Côte-Nord, Nord-du-Québec, Gaspésie-Îles-de-la-Madeleine, Capitale-Nationale and Chaudière-Appalaches.

Students in universities, CEGEPs and adult educations and vocational training centres in every region will also have to wear masks in class.

Another big rule is that high schoolers will need to have a vaccine passport "for certain extracurricular sports and physical activities [...] and for participation in inter-school games or competitions in the case of special sports programs and sports-study programs."

The vaccine passport will be required for all indoor sports and physical activities and for outdoor activities that "[involve] frequent or prolonged contact."

Finally, officials will supply rapid tests to schools where the "epidemiological situation is worrying."

"The impacts of not having a normal school life can be for years," National Public Health Director Dr. Horacio Arruda said at a press conference.

"Our ultimate goal is to keep students in school and avoid closing classrooms and as much as possible, avoid distance learning," Minister of Education Jean-François Roberge added.

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