Coronavirus: Île-de-France schools to close this week?

Published by Rizhlaine F. · Photos by Rizhlaine F. · Published on 29 March 2021 at 15h01 · Updated on 30 March 2021 at 15h52
The coronavirus epidemic is highly worrying in Île-de-France, and particularly in schools. Despite reinforced health protocol, are schools to close this week in the Paris area?

Pressure is increasing in Île-de-France. The entire region has been involved in hybrid lockdown since March 20, 2021 during which schools remain open. Yet, despite the implementation of new restrictions, the situation remains worrying. Île-de-France has one of the highest incidence rates in the country. In hospitals, the occupancy capacity is said to be exceeded within two weeks, and doctors might have to sort covid and non-covid patients out, opting for the youngest ones.

In schools, the situation is no bed of roses. The expanding contamination toll is such that in Seine-Saint-Denis, the incidence rate in schools is set between 1,000 and 1,300 cases for 100,000 inhabitants – according to Seine-Saint-Denis deputy Stéphane Peu on France Info. Furthermore, this weekend, teachers from one of Drancy high schools have called for the closure of the school where 20 pupils have lost a parent over the course of the health crisis.

As for the government, they have said they will close schools only as a last resort because of the consequences of the measure such as improving school dropout and more inequalities. So far, moving the school break forward was out of the question, so was closing schools. Yet, a reinforced health protocol has been instated on Monday March 29, 2021 in the 19 departments involved in lockdown: from now on, classes must close as soon as there is one positive case. But as the situation in Île-de-France is deteriorating, the government might decide this Wednesday March 31, during the Health Council, on tightening restrictions that could imply strict lockdown including closing schools.

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