France shuts 22 schools due to Covid-19 outbreaks

French education minister Jean-Michel Blanquer announced on Friday 22 schools were closed in France due to cases of Covid-19. "In mainland France, there are currently 12 schools closed out of a total of over 60,000, which is a small figure. Adding 10 schools in La Reunion (island), that makes it 22," Blanquer told Europe 1 radio.

Up to 130 classes have also been halted within schools and the minister said the authorities were checking around 250 incidents related to Covid-19 in schools every day. These incidents are mainly linked to "factors outside school concerning people who could have been contaminated" over the summer, he said. More than three coronavirus cases means that the school is temporarily shut, he said. But he added the first week had gone "relatively well" and "despite the fears everyone went back and that makes me very happy".

As over 12 million pupils returned to school in France on Tuesday some parents and teachers' unions have voiced concern at plans for reopening classrooms as the spread of the virus gathers renewed pace.

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