COVID-19: French schools to start gradual reopening

French students will gradually start returning to schools staring Monday, depending on where they live and their school year, French Education Minister Jean-Michel Blanquer said today.

Primary schools will open across the country Monday, with classes limited to 15 students, Blanquer said.

Middle-school students from regions where the rate of infection is slowing down — categorized as “green” by the French government — will be returning to school on May 18. But middle schools in areas where the virus is still actively circulating — categorized as “red” — will not reopen.

High schools will remain closed until at least the beginning of June, the education minister added.

Schools “cannot welcome everyone at the same time,” Blanquer said, so some students will be given priority. These include disabled children, children of health care or essential workers, and children who are classed as at risk of dropping out.

In some instances children may return next Tuesday to give professors time to prepare.

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