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Coronavirus

Italy to Reopen Schools in September

ROME — Italy’s education minister is promising students they will return to school in September.

Minister Lucia Azzolina told RAI state TV Thursday evening that come September all the nation’s school children “will hear the school bell ring” again. She said students older than six will have to wear protective masks at school and stay a safe distance apart from classmates.

Schools were closed as a safety measure after Italy started seeing hundreds of cases before the entire nation went into lockdown in early March. The COVID-19 outbreak in Europe began in Italy.

While the Italian government eased restrictions this month on many sectors of daily life, including allowing museums and all retail shops to open, restaurants to resume dining-in service and people to frequent parks, school buildings will stay shuttered for the rest of the school year. The only exception is high school students in their final year. They will return to school on June 17 to have individual oral exams needed for graduation.

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