Students in Quebec will be allowed to participate in school sports and extracurricular activities between class groups starting Monday, Education Minister Jean-François Roberge announced in a news conference this morning.
Students will be allowed to interact with those in their own class bubbles as well as with students in two other groups, Roberge said.
"We're keeping with the same principle that kids should stay with groups and they're not just free to go around," said Roberge.
"They have to stay with their class and they're allowed to go with two other closed groups — groups with always, day-after-day, the same other kids."
Programs for students with disabilities will also be allowed to resume between class groups.Those students will also be placed into smaller stable groups for those activities and will be asked to keep a physical distance wherever possible.
Inramural sports and art activities were expected to resume Sept. 14, but Premier François Legault said that would only happen if there wasn't a surge of COVID-19 cases in the province.
On Thursday, Legault said there may be some restrictions on the kinds of extracurricular activities allowed for schools in regions classified as "yellow" under the province's new COVID-19 alert system.
But that is not the case. The rules will be applied the same in schools classified as "green" or "yellow," Roberge said.
Should a region become orange or red however, students will then solely be confined to their class bubbles again.
"Of course there's no zero risk when you're in a pandemic but this limits the risk," said Roberge.
Roberge said schools are now ready to open students up to other groups because they have learned to implement COVID-19 safety regulations and because the case numbers in schools have remained relatively low.
New list of school cases coming, minister says
The government took down its public list of schools impacted by COVID-19 Thursday night, but Roberge Friday they are working to get a new and more updated list up in the coming days.
"We had some issues with this list. We want to be sure that when we go public with the list, all the information is really right and reviewed to our satisfaction," he said.
In the meantime, he said parents at the schools affected will continue to be alerted immediately.
According to the most recent data released by the government on Sept. 4, there were 118 schools across the province that had at least one case of COVID-19.
Watch: How Quebec's alert system works