At his daily COVID-19 press briefing, Premier François Legault, accompanied by Mayor Valérie Plante, announced that Montreal-area schools won't reopen until the beginning of the next school year, in late August or September. This is the second postponement for the reopening of elementary schools, which were originally projected to open in the Montreal metropolitan community (CMM) on May 19 and then on May 25.

The reopening of daycares has also been pushed back to June.

The postponement for elementary schools puts them on the same schedule as high schools, cégeps, and universities across the province.

Some Montreal-area universities such as McGill have already made the decision to move their fall semesters online.

While some retail businesses are set to reopen in Montreal on May 25, Legault made clear that that might still change as the situation on the island evolves. 

Public health is keeping a close eye on the situation, described by Legault as "fragile." 

Mayor Plante said she supports the decision to cancel the school year.

"We [...] know that the risk of contamination can be more [significant] through students and the school systems. So I agree with that decision," she said.

"We will be talking about how we will offer some options for families and kids who might be dealing with stress or other issues related [to] the pandemic [and] the cancelling of the school year."

"We have to go through this together without leaving anyone behind," she concluded.

Officials have been making a more pronounced distinction between what Legault called the "worrisome" situation in Montreal and the rest of the province, where schools and businesses have already started to reopen.

According to data from May 12, seven boroughs count over 1,000 total cases: Ahuntsic–Cartierville (1,671), Côte-des-Neiges–Notre-Dame-de-Grâce (1,633), Mercier–Hochelaga-Maisonneuve (1,591), Montréal-Nord (1,857), Rivière-des-Prairies–Pointe-aux-Trembles (1,561), Rosemont–La Petite Patrie (1,126), and Villeray–Saint-Michel–Parc-Extension (1,435).

Stay tuned for more news.

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