- After the provincial government announced that it would ban indoor public gatherings of 250 people and more, several temporary Montreal school closures were announced.
- The CSDM, McGill, and Concordia are all suspending classes in order to implement new recommendations from the government.
After Premier François Legault announced that the province would ban indoor gatherings of more than 250 people, Montreal school boards and universities announced that they would temporarily suspend classes. Just after 10 p.m. Thursday, the Commission Scolaire de Montréal (CSDM) made the announcement that "all institutions, daycare services, and CDSM offices will be closed for students and staff on Friday, March 13." McGill and Concordia will also suspend classes Friday, each sharing the news on Twitter.
"In order to evaluate how today’s coronavirus (COVID-19) announcement from the Quebec government will impact campus operations and academic activities, the University is suspending classes and exams on Friday, March 13," writes McGill administration in an official statement.
"The University is also cancelling all on-campus events likely to attract more than 250 participants, effective now through to Sunday, March 15."
Concordia assures that classes will resume Monday, March 16. And though courses are cancelled between March 13 and 15, "the university will remain open during this period and all other services will continue as usual."
However, "as of Friday, March 13," all Concordia "courses with enrollments of 250 students or more will no longer be taught in the classroom. These will be moved to online delivery starting early next week."
The announcements from Concordia and McGill come amid mounting pressure from students to move classes online. Online petitions have garnered over ten thousand signatures.
A spokesperson for Ready McGill, a student-led group calling on the university administration to cancel all in-person instruction, earlier told MTL Blog that "the McGill administration, unfortunately, is as bureaucratic as it has always been. We have not received any direct response despite our rapidly-growing signatures."
The City of Montreal is also cancelling large events and closing public gathering spaces that can accommodate more than 250 people, including libraries and other cultural centres.
More to come...