Primary schools set to close early, evening lockdown to run to January 14: NOS
Prime minister Mark Rutte and health minister Hugo de Jonge are expected to announce that primary schools will close on Friday for the winter break at Tuesday evening’s press conference, Dutch media report.
The government’s Outbreak Management Team recommended closing primary schools early because youngsters currently account for the largest share of new infections.
The exact details remain unclear, but according to broadcaster NOS and the AD, the measure will not affect secondary schools, and schools will be asked to remain open on Monday for the children of essential workers who have not had time to organise childcare.
According to news website Nu.nl, after school clubs will also close early but daycare for the youngest children will remain open.
The current package of coronavirus measures, including 5pm closing for bars and restaurants, is set to continue until January 14, cabinet sources have told broadcaster NOS.
The decision, if confirmed on Tuesday evening, means that non-essential shops, gyms and fitness centres will have to close at 5pm for several more weeks.
In addition, the recommendation that individual households welcome no more than four guests per day will remain in place – despite earlier pledges this would be lifted for the Christmas period, broadcaster NOS reported.
While the number of positive coronavirus tests reported to public health institute RIVM has gone down in recent days, hospital admissions remain high and government advisors say it would not be wise to relax the measures yet, given the emergence of the more infectious Omicron variant.
The press conference will be broadcast live on television and you can follow the proceedings via DutchNews.nl’s live tweeting service.
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