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French primary pupils trickle back to class after eight-week lockdown

REUTERS/Stephane Mahe

Across France, primary school pupils on Tuesday sat at least a metre apart in small classes and listened to teachers in masks on their first day back after two months of home-schooling during the coronavirus lockdown.

The lessons, though, did not cover maths or grammar, but hygiene amid a public health emergency: wash your hands, don’t touch your face and keep away from each other. That was the new reality as some 1.5 million elementary and primary pupils - roughly one in every four - returned to class as France tentatively emerges from lockdown. But with less than two months of the academic year left, some parents, teachers and their unions have questioned the wisdom of reopening schools when the virus continues to circulate, especially in the greater Paris region. The related COVID-19 disease has already killed more than 26,000 people in France. “The school that the kids are going to discover will have little to do with the school that they left behind,” said David, a teacher at a primary school in Paris’ western 16th district who gave his first name only.

13 May 2020

News Source Reuters

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