In Quebec, new cases of COVID-19 suspected to be linked to variants of the virus have led to the partial or total closure of 10 schools across the province.
Most of the schools forced to shut down are located in the Greater Montreal region, but there is one in Quebec City and another in Abitibi.
The CIUSSS de Laval, the regional health authority for the area, announced Monday the closure of classes or schools in four establishments due to suspected variant cases: the Père-Vimont, Saint-Maxime, Eureka and École de l’Équinoxe schools.
Over the weekend, Marguerite-d’Youville school in Quebec City announced that it had closed its doors due to a suspected case of a variant strain of COVID-19.
Des Grands-Êtres school, an elementary school located in Montreal’s Saint-Laurent borough, is also completely closed, for several reasons including a suspected variant case. The temporary closure of the Fontainebleau school in Blainville was also announced over the weekend.
Authorities are concerned about the growing number of novel coronavirus cases suspected to be linked to variants.
Last week, the Institut national de santé publique du Québec (INSPQ) reported that a new variant of COVID-19 could strike schools first, since they are one of the places where there is the most social contacts.
This concern stems from the fact that the new variants are more transmissible than the basic strain of COVID-19.
Quebec has reported 23 confirmed infections of COVID-19 variants as of Monday, as well as 415 presumptive cases.
However, the daily tally of new cases reported by health authorities remains on the decline, with 805 new infections reported on Monday.
There are now are now 875 closed classes in Quebec, 90 less than last Friday.