MONTREAL -- New restrictions for the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic will come into force in Quebec on Thursday for regions in the red zone on the province’s regional alert map. 

This second series of service interruptions will apply until at least Oct. 28, at which point the situation will be reevaluated. 

As of Thursday, students in high school will be obliged to wear masks at all times at school, including in class and on school grounds more generally. Education Minister Jean-Francois Roberge specified that masks can be taken off for physical education classes. 

Quebec is also imposing a hybrid model of schooling for students in secondary 4 and 5, who will alternate between in-person and virtual lessons. 

As far as sports-etudes is concerned, events will be cancelled. Training can still take place, under the condition that participants are all part of the same class bubble. 

Post-secondary schools must, as of Thursday, apply their emergency protocols. CEGEPs and universities will therefore have to offer distanced learning as much as they can, and social activities will be banned on campus. 

Outside of the context of school, group activities will also be banned – whether it be sports games, training, or physical activities that aren’t sports or individual activities. These new measures mean gyms will have to temporarily close, and they can expect financial help from the provincial government. 

These measures are being added to the long list that already exists in red zones, notably concerning visits to homes, private gatherings, audiences in public indoor spaces, as well as frequenting bar and restaurants, all of which is illegal until at least Oct. 28. 

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 7, 2020.