Denmark has begun reopening its schools following a month-long closure over COVID-19, becoming the first country in Europe to do so.
AFP reported that nurseries, kindergartens and primary schools have started reopening in around half of Denmark’s municipalities and 35% of Copenhagen’s schools. Other schools have requested more time to adjust to health protocols but all are expected to reopen by next Monday.
Middle and high school students will continue remote classes for now but are expected to return to classrooms on 10th May.
Denmark began reopening schools on Wednesday after a month-long closure over the novel coronavirus, becoming the first country in Europe to do so.
Schools are required to ensure that a distance of two metres is maintained between desks in classrooms and recesses must be limited to small groups. Sanitary and hand-washing measures will also be implemented.
Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen has said this will be the first careful phase in the reopening of Denmark.
“I do not believe we will return to the Denmark we knew before coronavirus, but it is also important that we do not keep Denmark closed for longer than we need to,” she said.
However, some parents have voiced scepticism at this move, warning that the state shouldn’t treat their children as “guinea pigs”.
Denmark has so far confirmed 6,691 COVID-19 cases and 299 deaths.
Yesterday, Austria became the first European country to start implementing its plan to reopen the country.
Before Denmark, Austria was the first European country to unveil its roadmap for a return to a “new normal”. Yesterday, it started allowing small non-food shops to open up, while maintaining social distancing rules and requiring masks to be work in public.
Cover photo: A school in Denmark (Photo: Tahbepet: Flickr)