MONTREAL -- A Quebec Superior Court judge has ruled against parents who wanted online learning to be open to all of the province's students, not just those who get a rare medical exemption.

In a judgment released Monday, Justice Chantal Chatelain wrote that no rights are denied by limiting COVID exemptions to medical grounds, and that home schooling remains a "reasonable option."

A group of parents had initiated the case, arguing that their kids should be permitted to take online classes since, they said, sanitary measures put in place in the province's schools were not adequate during the pandemic, creating health risks.

Health experts were called to testify for both sides, with witnesses for the government saying that the risk of transmission of COVID-19 in schools was minimal. 

In her ruling, Chatelain said that sanitary measures were adequate and, based on the evidence presented, were of "the highest standard."

Chatelain also sided with the government on their argument that school is important not only for learning, but children's social development and mental health. 

A lawyer for the parents said the group will take a few days to assess the ruling before deciding whether to appeal.

In an email to CTV News, a spokesperson for the Education Ministry re-iterated the importance of in-person classes for children but said the government understands some parents may still have concerns.

"We want to reassure them everything has been put in place to guarantee their health and safety," they said.