MOSCOW (Sputnik) - France was forced to halt the activities of 22 schools after new coronavirus cases were detected among the pupils days after the new school year began, Education Minister Jean-Michel Blanquer said on Friday to the Europe 1 broadcaster.
He noted that over half of the 22 establishments were closed on the French mainland, and the rest are located in overseas territories, including the island of Reunion.
"There are twelve closed facilities in the Metropolitan [France] today, on Reunion we have ten. All in all, that's 22 [schools]", Blanquer said.
The minister clarified that usually a school is closed when at least three COVID-19 infections are confirmed within it, followed by a transition to virtual learning.
He also said that if the mass closure of educational facilities is necessary in the future, the authorities would initiate a protocol to help families whose children would have to receive their education via digital means.
France is currently experiencing a second surge in COVID-19 infections, with a new daily record high of 7,379 infections registered on 28 August. In the wake of the resurgence, the government has re-imposed some restrictive measures across the country, in particular, the requirement to wear face masks.