Quebec elementary, high schools will reopen Jan. 17: Legault

LaurenHill Academy in St. Laurent.

The province's elementary and high schools will reopen Monday Jan. 17, as originally planned, Premier François Legault posted on social media Wednesday night.

The schools had been closed since a few days before Christmas because of increased COVID numbers.

"Good news!" he posted. "Public Health is in favour of the opening of primary and secondary schools for next Monday, as planned. CEGEPs and universities will also be able to go back in person and they are given a certain amount of time to adjust."

Legault added that "it’s very important for children to go back to school, to learn, to reunite with their friends, to find some normality.

"The vast majority of children do not face significant health risks with COVID. However, school delays and isolation can cause major problems. I understand this can be of concern for parents, teachers and school staff. What is reassuring is that 98 percent of high school teens are vaccinated with one dose and 89 percent with two doses. Our primary school children are nearly 60 percent vaccinated for the first dose and their immune response is very strong at this age."

The Premier added that teachers, "are massively vaccinated and have had priority access to the bosster since the end of December.

"The government will also make rapid testing available to schools. Everyone is going to wear a mask in the early days. We know we're going to have to adjust in the first few days, but we've already been there.

"We owe this to our children."

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