Iceland has put in place a new series of COVID-19 measures in educational institutions that came into effect November 3.
“The aim is to interfere as little as possible with educational work, and that activities in pre-schools and the early years of compulsory schooling should proceed in full,” the government said in a news release on Monday.
People born in 2011 or afterwards will no longer have to wear face masks in pre-schools, junior schools, music schools, upper secondary schools (post-16), post-secondary education and the universities.
The new rule is in effect in both private and public institutions.
Exceptions to the rule will be made in some cases where a two-metre distance cannot be observed, in which case face masks are required.
Group sizes that must now be observed in Iceland include no more than 50 students together in the same space for children in pre-school or in grades one to four; no more than 25 students in the same space from grades five to ten; and a general rule of no more than 10 people in the same space in universities.
News cases reported Monday
As of Tuesday, Iceland’s COVID-19 stats page was reporting 4,931 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 12 deaths since the pandemic began. Domestic infections per 100,000 people over the last 14 days is reported as 198.
Iceland is now only updating its government COVID-19 stats on hospital and emergency admissions twice a week, on Monday and Thursday local time.
As of Monday, it was reporting 273 hospital admissions and 43 emergency ward admissions.
Twenty-six new cases were reported on Monday.
Write to Eilís Quinn at eilis.quinn(at)cbc.ca
Related stories from around the North:
Canada: COVID-19 travel clinic opens in Montreal for travellers to Inuit region of Arctic Quebec, Eye on the Arctic
Greenland: Greenland’s new executive order on COVID-19 comes into effect September 30, Eye on the Arctic
Iceland: Iceland tightens up COVID-19 rules and increases social distancing rule to two metres across the country, Eye on the Arctic
Sweden: Sweden seeks new powers to limit movement during pandemic, Radio Sweden
United States: After early containment success, there’s now rapid COVID-19 spread in rural Alaska, including the Arctic, Alaska Public Media