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Schools

The measures put in place in the French sector will also apply in the English sector.

School organization will be based on public health recommendations, which are constantly evolving and can vary from region to region.

Each school will take measures to respect the physical distancing recommendation of maintaining at least 1 metre between students in different subgroups.

Visitors will not be allowed to enter the school.

The premises will be subject to regular, appropriate maintenance to ensure their cleanliness. Efforts will be made to raise awareness about proper handwashing and respiratory hygiene.

Hygiene and sanitation measures are being implemented in schools, as per public health recommendations.

No, wearing a mask is not compulsory if the 2-metre distance between teachers and students is respected. However, if a task requires that a staff member be less than 2 metres away from a student, the staff member must wear the appropriate protective equipment, a procedure mask and eye protection (e.g. safety glasses or visor).

The organization of schools will be based on the guidelines issued by the local health authorities.

Students or staff members with symptoms of COVID-19 must not enter the school. Any person who receives a diagnosis of COVID-19 must comply with a 14-day isolation period.

No. Like the rest of the population, students who are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms must stay at home and contact a health care professional. A Self-Care Guide with information on the necessary steps to take has been made available to Quebecers. More information on the health guidelines to follow, especially who to contact in order to get tested, is available on Québec.ca.

Further information will be provided based on how the situation evolves. At the end of the 2019-2020 school year, being physically present at the school was not recommended for staff members who are vulnerable for health reasons (chronic disease, severe immunodeficiency, pregnancy or aged 70 or older).

Anyone who presents symptoms associated with COVID-19 must immediately leave the school premises, call 1-877-644-4545 and follow the instructions they are given. Pedagogical support will be provided to students during their absence from school.

Student advancement to the next grade level will be determined by the students’ evaluations carried out before schools closed on March 13. In addition, teachers are asked to determine the students’ results for the last report card based on their knowledge of the students’ acquired learning. 

No matter the level, schools must plan for a review period at the beginning of the 2020-2021 school year.

No. The ministerial examinations that were scheduled for May, June and July will not be administered. Students were unable to acquire all the learning targeted by the programs of study because of the health crisis that caused educational services to be suspended for a considerable amount of time.

Only Secondary IV and V students who were eligible for a ministerial examination before the 2019-2020 school year will be permitted to retake ministerial examinations in July 2020.

The government can, if the circumstances warrant it, cancel an examination and use the marks awarded by the school as a final grade. Due to the current exceptional circumstances, the ministerial examinations will be cancelled, and the school results will be taken into account in the awarding of diplomas. Students will move up to the next grade level based on the teachers’ professional judgment and the students’ previous results on the first two report cards.

Since July 2, schools have been able to organize summer courses for Secondary IV and V students who are failing one or more subjects.

Institutions are also able to administer local examinations or use other evaluation methods to certify students’ successful completion of a Secondary IV or V program and to enable students to obtain the credits required to continue their educational path. Children who are being homeschooled at the Secondary IV or V level may also be evaluated using these methods.

Non-essential activities like infrastructure sharing are temporarily interrupted in order to slow the spread of the virus, as a public health measure. Related activities such as room rentals as well as sports and cultural activities are also targeted by the closure, with the exception of services offered by partners as part of specific pedagogical programs.

Aide financière aux études (Student financial assistance)

The income taken into account when calculating the 2019-2020 financial assistance is that of the 2019 calendar year. For that reason, any fluctuations in the students’ income in 2020 are not considered for 2019-2020. In some cases, they may, however, affect the calculations for 2020-2021. The government has announced that it will be postponing repayment of any loans incurred under the Loans and Bursaries Program and the Loans Program for Part-Time Studies for a period of six months.

The Ministère de l’Enseignement supérieur is investing an additional $375 million to support students and institutions of higher learning. Improvements will enter into force in the coming weeks. Adjustments will be made to applications that have already been submitted.

Please note that repayments will resume as of October 1, 2020, in accordance with the terms and conditions established before the postponement of repayments.

No, the government has announced that repayments of all loans contracted under the Loans and Bursaries Program and the Loans for Part-Time Studies Program are postponed for a period of six months. The government will pay the interest.

No payments are expected during this period. You do not have to take any steps or provide any proof to benefit from this exceptional measure, since it applies automatically to anyone who has incurred a debt with Aide financière aux études.

Please note that repayments will resume as of October 1, 2020, in accordance with the terms and conditions established before the postponement of repayments.

No. The government will pay the interest. Students are not required to make any payments during this period.

No. Your financial institution will automatically extend the amortization period for your loan by six months and your monthly payments will remain the same.

For the next six months, you will not be required to make repayments of your student loan.

Your Deferred Payment Plan is also suspended for six months.

After this postponement ends, your Deferred Payment Plan will continue for the rest of the time remaining in it.

Sports, recreation and outdoor activities

The public health guidelines vary in accordance with the alert level of each region.

In green, yellow and orange zones, all indoor and outdoor sports and recreational activities carried out individually or in groups are permitted, provided that physical distancing rules and all the guidelines issued by the public health authorities are respected.

This includes public and private pools and physical fitness centres. Owners and managers of these facilities are responsible for deciding whether or not to reopen them.

It should be noted that the risk of contracting COVID-19 is higher when practising activities carried out indoors or in teams, regardless of the physical activity or sport in question. The risk is also higher for activities involving frequent or extended contact between players.

For regions located in red zones, no organized sports or recreational activities are permitted. This means that group activities and supervised sports or physical activities are not allowed. Only activities carried out individually or in pairs (physical distance must be respected) and individual training are allowed. Wearing a face covering is not mandatory during physical activities. All competitions are suspended, regardless of whether they are organized by schools, associations or private leagues, even for individual sports. In addition, indoor sports facilities may remain open for individual activities, but crowds are not permitted. Access to locker rooms, except pool locker rooms, is prohibited; however, washrooms remain available. Physical fitness rooms and centres are closed.

Practising recreational and sports activities is good for our health and well-being. The public health authority guidelines that must be respected in red zones are not intended to suspend activities. Rather, they aim to keep social contacts to a minimum during organized activities in order to limit the spread of the virus and protect everyone’s health. Over the coming weeks, Quebecers are encouraged to stay in shape by carrying out informal activities individually, in pairs or together with the members of their household. Consult the resources for staying active outdoors or at home.

Activities must respect the current physical distancing measures, no matter when or where they take place. However, during a game or match in green, yellow or orange zones, individuals are permitted to make brief physical contact or come close together so long as it does not occur frequently.

The restrictions with regard to travel between regions vary in accordance with the progressive regional alert and intervention system. For more information about the rules to follow, consult the web page on the progressive regional alert and intervention system (COVID-19).

In green, yellow and orange zones, the maximum number of individuals who may gather simultaneously in one sporting venue or place varies in accordance with the progressive regional alert and intervention system.

In red zones, additional public health guidelines must be respected. For more information about the rules to follow, consult the web page on the resumption of sports, recreational and outdoor activities during COVID-19.

Team sports are permitted in accordance with the progressive regional alert and intervention system.

In red zones, additional public health guidelines must be respected. For more information about the rules to follow, consult the web page on the resumption of sports, recreational and outdoor activities during COVID-19.

Given that the risk of contracting COVID-19 is higher for team sports activities with opposing sides (e.g. where players who are guarding each other are more exposed), player position rotation is encouraged. Wherever possible, teams should also be composed of the same players. Lastly, the number of participants must allow for physical distancing, and certain activities must be adapted to limit prolonged contact between players.

Matches in combat sports (e.g. karate, taekwondo, boxing or judo) may resume in green, yellow and orange zones in accordance with the recommendations issued by the public health authorities.

The following rules must be followed at all times:

  • The number of training partners must be limited, specifically by creating small, stable groups of no more than four individuals.
  • Competitions are prohibited.
  • Exercises that involve direct contact should be short.
  • The length of matches must be reduced as much as possible.
  • The general health guidelines for everyone (participants, staff members, family and friends) must be strictly respected during sports activities as well as in daily life.
  • Participants are required to provide informed consent and commit to respecting the prevention measures during sports activities as well as in their daily lives.

IMPORTANT: Regions at the maximum alert level (red zone) must respect additional public health guidelines. For more information, consult the web page on the resumption of sports, recreational and outdooractivities during COVID-19.

Individuals who are at a higher risk of complications were they to contract COVID-19 (e.g. over 70 years of age, with a chronic illness, with a suppressed or weakened immune system) are encouraged to avoid travel and contact with others. If such a person still decides to participate in a gathering, they must strictly respect the health recommendations for everyone This hyperlink will open in a new window..

Yes. It is recommended that the accompanying party be an individual residing under the same roof. If not, it is recommended that an accompanied person with a disability have their Companion Leisure Card (CLC) with them as a supporting document justifying their need for assistance. If physical distancing rules cannot be observed, the accompanying party must wear protective equipment.

Some individuals may be allowed to remove a face covering when carrying out high-intensity activities as part of a pair (e.g. tandem cycling team, visually impaired runner and their guide), provided the following conditions apply:

  • Neither of the two individuals exhibits symptoms nor has been instructed to self-isolate.
  • Neither of the two individuals has a chronic health condition or immunodeficiency that might put them at risk of complications if they were to contract COVID-19.
  • Neither of the two individuals is older than 70 years of age.
  • The respiratory hygiene (e.g. coughing or sneezing into elbow, wearing a mask during low-intensity activities), and hand hygiene (e.g. frequent handwashing before and after an activity) measures must be strictly respected.
  • Both individuals must avoid touching their eyes, nose or mouth.
  • Both individuals must be aware that the risks of transmitting or contracting COVID-19 are higher when they carry out such activities, due to the close proximity between them, the fact that they are not able to wear a mask or face covering, and the fact that the dispersal of droplets is more frequent during physical activity. During tandem cycling activities, the risk of contracting COVID-19 is greater for the person with a visual impairment seated in the back than for the guide in the front.
  • The pair should remain the same at all times, meaning that the individual who requires assistance should carry out their activities with the same guide or accompanying party.

Professional and semi-professional sporting events can only be held without spectators, whether the events are held indoors or outdoors.

IMPORTANT: In red zones, additional public health guidelines must be respected. For more information about the rules to follow, consult the web page on the resumption of sports, recreational and outdoor activities during COVID-19.

Sports facilities

The maximum number of spectators who may gather at the same time in a single sports venue or facility varies in accordance with the progressive regional alert and intervention system and with the venue capacity.

For more information about the rules to follow, consult the health measures to be respected based on the regional alert level (PDF 90 Kb) (In French only).

Owners and managers of facilities and organizations responsible for activities must implement hygiene and protective measures in order to comply with the conditions set by the public health authorities.

In addition, the CNESST has produced the Occupational Health and Safety Standards Guide for the Leisure, Sports and Outdoor Recreation Sector – COVID-19 This hyperlink will open in a new window.to ensure the safety of employees and users of facilities that are permitted to open.

Site managers may also limit the number of clients admitted to a site, or even close a site, to ensure compliance with the recommendations issued by public health authorities.

The maximum number of individuals who may gather simultaneously in one sporting venue or place varies in accordance with the progressive regional alert and intervention system.

For more information about the rules to follow, consult the health measures to be respected based on the regional alert level (PDF 90 Kb) (In French only).

In addition, sports federations and provincial recreational and outdoor activity organizations have worked in collaboration with the Ministère de l’Éducation in order to develop guidelines tailored to their respective fields and disciplines.

These organizations are responsible for informing their members of these guidelines and for making it clear that health and safety guidelines, especially hygiene rules, must be followed in order to ensure that activities are practised safely.

In green, yellow and orange zones, workplaces offering indoor and outdoor sports and recreational activities may continue to do so. All indoor and outdoor physical, sports and recreational activities, without exception, must respect the current physical distancing measures, regardless of when or where they are carried out. During a game or match, it is permitted for individuals to make brief physical contact or come close together so long as it happens infrequently.

In red zones, additional public health guidelines must be respected. For more information about the rules to follow, consult the web page on the resumption of sports, recreational and outdoor activities during COVID-19.

Yes. In this and all other activity sectors, public health authorities are monitoring the daily evolution of the health situation in order to advise the government on the actions to be taken.

This is already the case in regions that are at the maximum alert level (red zones).

Public activities that are carried out in the form of competitions (e.g. leagues, recreational tournaments, events with standings) and that allow for the current physical distancing recommendations to be maintained are permitted in green, yellow and orange zones.

The organizational procedures must be planned so as to minimize the number of people involved in holding the competition. The number of participants, accompanying persons and staff members present must be limited in order to enable the current physical distancing rules to be maintained at all times during activities, whether indoors or outdoors.

The maximum number of individuals who may gather simultaneously in one sporting venue or place, as well as the restrictions with regard to travel between regions, vary in accordance with the progressive regional alert and intervention system.

For more information about the rules to follow, consult the health measures to be respected based on the regional alert level (PDF 90 Kb) (In French only).

Matches in combat sports may be allowed in green, yellow and orange zones in accordance with the recommendations by the public health authorities, but competitions are still not permitted. In red zones, additional public health guidelines must be respected.

For more information about the rules to follow, consult the web page on the resumption of sports, recreational and outdoor activities during COVID-19.

Yes. Outdoor and indoor aquatic facilities and beaches can reopen.

The maximum number of individuals who may gather simultaneously in one sporting venue or place varies in accordance with the progressive regional alert and intervention system.

For more information about the rules to follow, consult the health measures to be respected based on the regional alert level (PDF 90 Kb) (In French only).

Owners and managers determine how they enable participants to access their facilities, sites or equipment. In some cases, reservations may be required, while in others, access may be limited or provided on a priority basis.

The maximum number of individuals who may gather simultaneously in one sporting venue or place varies in accordance with the progressive regional alert and intervention system.

For more information about the rules to follow, consult the health measures to be respected based on the regional alert level (PDF 90 Kb) (In French only).

Yes. The owners and administrators of recreational and sports facilities (municipalities, educational institutions, private companies) have this authority. They can decide when to reopen their facilities and how to manage access in accordance with their resources and in compliance with current health measures.

Yes, in green, yellow and orange zones. However, organizational procedures must be planned out so as to minimize the number of people involved in the holding of such activities.

The maximum number of individuals who may gather simultaneously in one sporting venue or place varies in accordance with the progressive regional alert and intervention system.

For more information about the rules to follow, consult the health measures to be respected based on the regional alert level (PDF 90 Kb) (In French only).

Access to non-essential common areas that lend themselves to gathering is restricted and loitering around facility entrances and exits is not allowed.

No. The government issues public health guidelines and recommendations regarding hygiene and safety that must be respected. In addition, it is progressively permitting public places to reopen for sports, recreational and outdoor activities (workplace). 

The organization, business or owner of a site is responsible for establishing a reopening plan that complies with current government guidelines. A reference guide produced by the CNESST This hyperlink will open in a new window. provides help in identifying the measures to be implemented.

Providing access to sanitary facilities is not recommended. However, should it be essential that some facilities (e.g. washrooms) be made available to participants, their use must be kept to a minimum and strict hygiene measures must be implemented. This decision falls under the responsibility of the owner or manager of the facility. Providing access to showers in the changing rooms is permitted, so long as physical distancing guidelines are followed and the area is cleaned regularly throughout the day.

IMPORTANT: In red zones, additional public health guidelines must be respected. For more information about the rules to follow, consult the web page on the resumption of sports, recreational and outdoors activities during COVID-19.

The organization, business or owner of the site is responsible for establishing a reopening plan that complies with current government guidelines. A reference guide produced by the CNESST This hyperlink will open in a new window. provides help in identifying the measures to be implemented.

Organizations and owners who make their facilities available to the public must make sure that any training sessions or games respect the current physical distancing rules and that health measures are implemented.

Organizations offering a shuttle service must respect all the relevant rules governing public health and the use of public transport.

It is recommended that users follow the usual health guidelines, maintain a two‑metre physical distance between themselves and others wherever possible, and wear face coverings.

In addition, users are encouraged to change their regular schedules, if possible, in order to avoid crowds during rush-hour transportation.

Sports equipment

Sharing and renting equipment is not recommended at this time.

However, at facilities where equipment rentals are allowed, the equipment managers must establish procedures for cleaning, decontaminating and disinfecting the equipment.

It is recommended that any shared objects and equipment, for example during group activities, be disinfected regularly, given that it is difficult to keep from touching one’s face, particularly in the context of physical and sports activities. Each participant should use their own equipment as much as possible.

In outdoor public spaces, it is recommended to maintain the existing cleaning procedures for outdoor furniture and equipment, especially when it is frequently used (e.g. hand railings on stairs). The risk of the virus spreading through outdoor equipment is still weak. To ensure that disinfection procedures are as efficient as possible, they must be adjusted in winter months based on local weather conditions.

For more information about cleaning and disinfection procedures in the context of COVID-19, see the information sheet COVID-19 : Nettoyage et désinfection des surfaces This hyperlink will open in a new window. (available in French only).

The risk of COVID‑19 transmission via outdoor surfaces is not likely to change seasonally, once the small amounts of the virus present on these surfaces and the presence of multiple environmental factors negatively affecting the viability of the virus are taken into account.

There is no evidence that the effectiveness of a physical barrier to droplet spreading is reduced by the ambient temperature. However, it is possible that, in some cases, the face covering may freeze due to the accumulation of moisture. In this case, for reasons of comfort as much as effectiveness, the face covering should be replaced.

During moderate to intense physical activity, face coverings may reduce the ability to breathe comfortably and may freeze due to the accumulation of moisture. Additionally, the risk of injury may be increased if the face covering is caught on a piece of equipment.

Wearing a mask or a face covering during a physical or sports activity can present certain difficulties, such as when mittens or gloves make it difficult to handle a face covering or mask. For this reason, a well-fitting neck warmer, balaclava or other piece of clothing that covers the nose and mouth may be used instead. However, such pieces of clothing must consist of at least two layers of close-knit fabric and be large enough to completely cover the mouth and nose without leaving any areas exposed.

Given that neck warmers may freeze due to the accumulation of moisture, it is recommended that they be twisted around (with the part that accumulated moisture at the back or side of the neck) or replaced during the day.

In areas where there is significant traffic, such as common areas within ski resorts or while waiting in line outside, the distance that must be respected between individuals who do not reside in the same household remains at 2 metres. Wearing a mask or face covering is recommended, but not mandatory.

In order to prevent frostbite, removing gloves or mittens in order to disinfect hands when outdoors is not recommended. It is preferable to disinfect or wash hands indoors. Despite this, it is important that hand sanitizing stations be made available in strategic locations.  

However, it is still important to clean and disinfect frequently touched outdoor surfaces.

The maximum capacity of enclosed spaces is based on the available space (area) and the ability to provide 2 metres of physical distancing between individuals who do not live in the same household. No more than 250 people may gather at the same time. Physical distancing is one of the sanitary guidelines that it is important to respect in order to reduce the spread of the virus, but other measures, such as adequate ventilation of a space, can also help ensure that the likelihood of COVID‑19 transmission is reduced. As a lower ceiling can affect the ventilation of an indoor environment, it may actually increase the chance of transmission. However, as up to this point there is no evidence that individuals can contract COVID‑19 from airborne transmission outside of the close vicinity of an infected person, the height of ceilings is not currently considered when calculating the maximum capacity of an enclosed space. For more information about the risks of contracting COVID‑19 and ventilation systems, see the COVID 19: Indoor Environment This hyperlink will open in a new window. information sheet published by the Institut national de santé publique du Québec (INSPQ).

Just like a face shield, the mouth shield does not offer adequate protection from droplet projection. There is no seal, so the droplets are spread into the air by the small spaces surrounding the shield.

In order to communicate more easily with people with a hearing impairment, it is better to use a face covering with a window. Several models of face masks with windows are available for purchase, and it is even possible to make one yourself (the steps are provided in the How to make a mask or a face covering section).

International students

The modifications to the different administrative procedures announced for educational institutions apply to both Québec and international students. It is recommended that any information that may be of interest on this page be consulted as it pertains to all students.

International students will be entitled to the Canada Emergency Response Benefit This hyperlink will open in a new window. (CERB) if they meet the program eligibility criteria, particularly:

  • Have declared an income of at least $5000, earned in Canada or outside the country, during the last fiscal year or during the 12 months prior to their application. Applicants must be Canadian residents.
  • Have stopped working in relation to the COVID-19 crisis, without having left their employment voluntarily. Thus, they are not eligible if they stopped working before the crisis began.

No measure is currently planned for this specific purpose.

The repatriation of foreign nationals is usually the responsibility of their country of origin.

No measure is currently planned for this specific purpose.No measure is currently planned for this specific purpose.

No measure is currently planned for this specific purpose.

However, the Ministère has encouraged educational institutions to offer special support and possibly implement measures to help international students who may find themselves in a precarious situation.

International students will be able to leave Canada based on available flights or may choose to stay in Canada if they have yet to complete their studies, provided that their immigration documents are in order.

Institutions are encouraged to continue processing all applications so as to not delay the subsequent steps required for international students to begin their studies at the chosen institution.

International students must have a valid Québec Acceptance Certificate (CAQ) and study permit when they begin their classes. To obtain these documents, students must have a proof of admission.

Note that international students are not required to obtain a CAQ and a study permit prior to starting a program of study through distance education while they are not residing in Canada. However, they will need to obtain these documents before being authorized to enter the country to complete their program in person, as needed.

International students can attend distance courses, just like Québec students.

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has not announced the automatic renewal of temporary residency permits. Students are asked to submit a request for renewal before the date on which their permit expires. If students meet this condition, they are granted “implied status,” meaning that their current temporary residency is maintained until a decision is made regarding their application. International students are requested not to go to border crossings in an attempt to renew their immigration documents. The most up-to-date information is usually published by the federal government This hyperlink will open in a new window..

The Ministère de l’Immigration, de la Francisation et de l’Intégration (MIFI) is extending, until December 31, 2020, the minister’s consent for the duration of the stay in Québec of international students whose Québec Acceptance Certificate (CAQ) for studies expires as of April 30, 2020 and before December 31, 2020. This regulation applies to students whose CAQ had not already expired on April 30, 2020.

Temporary residents must maintain valid temporary resident status at all times. The Ministère de l’Immigration, de la Francisation et de l’intégration (MIFI) continues to process applications for temporary selection.

Students who were already studying in Canada and whose courses were moved online due to the travel restrictions and public health measures introduced because of COVID-19 will not be penalized and will retain their eligibility for the PGWPP, including the length of the work permit to which they would be entitled. However, these students must continue at least 50 % of their program of study in Canada to be eligible for the PGWPP.

The IRCC has introduced a new temporary policy for students who currently hold a study permit or who were approved for a study permit for a program set to begin in May or June 2020, but who are unable to enter Canada due to the current travel restrictions. If courses of study are delivered online exceptionally because of COVID-19, the eligibility of these students for the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program (PGWPP) will not be affected. International students in this situation can begin their courses from outside Canada and complete up to 50% of their program from outside the country if they cannot travel to Canada earlier.

international students are not required to obtain a Québec Acceptance Certificate (CAQ) and a study permit to study through distance education. However, they will need to obtain these documents before being authorized to enter the country to complete their program in person, as needed.

It is important to note that students whose study permits were issued no later than March 18, 2020, are exempt from the travel restrictions in place in Canada This hyperlink will open in a new window. and are therefore allowed to enter the country. However, they must not be experiencing any symptoms prior to boarding their flight and must undergo a mandatory 14-day quarantine period upon their arrival.

For information on health protection, foreign nationals can refer to the Questions and answers about our services during the pandemic page on the Régie de l’assurance maladie du Québec website This hyperlink will open in a new window., specifically the following sections:

  • COVID-19: Information and screening – What coverage does Québec provide for COVID-19 screening and care? 
  • Foreign workers and students in Québec: health insurance coverage

The Ministère de l’Immigration, de la Francisation et de l’Intégration (MIFI) is extending, until December 31, 2020, the minister’s consent for the duration of the stay in Québec of international students whose Québec Acceptance Certificate (CAQ) for studies expires as of April 30, 2020 and before December 31, 2020. This regulation applies to students whose CAQ had not already expired on April 30, 2020.

This decision is intended to facilitate the steps that must be taken by inernational students who were in the process of completing their study program but who must extend their stay in Québec due to the current health state of emergency and the temporary interruption of their courses.

These students can therefore submit an application to the federal government as soon as possible to have their study permit extended without having to include a new CAQ, which will allow them to maintain valid temporary residence status and to complete their study program when their courses resume.

No, international students will not have to pay any fees for extending their CAQ, since the required fees were already paid when they submitted their application for the CAQ that they obtained.

International students who would like to extend their stay in Québec for studies beyond December 31, 2020, in order to complete a study program or to begin a new program in the fall 2020 semester, must submit a new application for a CAQ for studies to the MIFI and a new application for a study permit to the federal government. In all cases, students should start the required immigration procedures at least three months before their current authorization for studies expires.

International students who have earned their degree can submit an application for permanent selection under the PEQ if they have been awarded, by an educational institution in Québec, within three years of the date of submission of their application, one of the following:

  • a university diploma attesting to a bachelor’s, a master’s or a doctoral degree
  • a college diploma for technical studies or a vocational diploma at the secondary level, with or without attestation of vocational specialization, obtained consecutively, attesting to 1800 hours or more of consecutive study and leading to a trade

The Ministère accepts attestations of successful completion of a study program as well as a final transcripts issued by the registrar of the educational institution. Since the programs admissible under the PEQ must have a minimum duration of 1800 hours, these graduates can obtain a three-year post-graduation work permit. The duration of this permit gives them all the time they need to submit an application for permanent selection under the PEQ as graduates or even as temporary foreign workers.

The federal government is responsible for issuing study permits. If you have any questions about study permits, please visit Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada’s website This hyperlink will open in a new window..

The organization Accueil Plus offers a wealth of information to guide you in pursuing your studies in Québec, notably with regard to entering the country in the current context. Refer to the following section on the organization’s website This hyperlink will open in a new window. to access the available information. Note that Accueil Plus is a trusted partner of the Québec government.

Organization of educational activities in 2020-2021

  • 100% of students present in schools full-time
  • Organization of stable class groups (the same students remain in the same group at all times)
  • Compliance with the current physical distancing rules (no physical distancing required between students from the same stable class group, 1 metre between students from different stable class groups and 2 metres between students and school staff)
  • Staff moving between rooms to teach different subjects
  • All subjects taught (including Arts Education programs and Physical Education and Health)
  • Modified access to common areas, while respecting health measures (gymnasium, music rooms, cafeteria, etc.)
  • Reorganization of schedules and special pedagogical projects based on the principle of stable class groups, with each student staying in their group no matter what courses they are taking

Starting on September 14, optional courses, extracurricular activities, concentrations and special pedagogical projects have been safely offered within groups that are different from the stable class groups. However, for schools located in red zones, special pedagogical projects (Sports-études, Arts-études) can continue under specific conditions and extracurricular activities in these zones are suspended.

This resumption took place in accordance with the applicable health guidelines as well as the Progressive regional alert and intervention system for COVID‑19. This is why additional measures now apply in schools located in red zones. To learn more, please see the page on the organization of educational activities.

  • 100% of students present in schools full-time (note that an alternate optionexists for students in Secondary IV and V if it is impossible to rearrange course schedules to comply with the principle of stable class groups)
  • Organization of stable class groups (the same students remain in the same group at all times)
  • Compliance with the current physical distancing rules (no physical distancing required between students from the same stable class group, 1 metre between students from different stable class groups and 2 metres between students and school staff)
  • Staff moving between rooms to teach different subjects
  • All subjects taught (including Arts Education programs and Physical Education and Health)
  • Modified access to common areas, while respecting health measures (gymnasium, music rooms, cafeteria, etc.)
  • Reorganization of schedules and special projects based on the principle of stable class groups, with each student staying in their group no matter what courses they are taking

Starting on September 14, optional courses, extracurricular activities, concentrations and special pedagogical projects have been safely offered within groups that are different from the stable class groups. However, for schools located in red zones, special pedagogical projects (Sports-études, Arts-études) can continue under specific conditions and extracurricular activities in these zones are suspended.

This resumption took place in accordance with the applicable health guidelines as well as the Progressive regional alert and intervention system for COVID‑19. This is why additional measures now apply in schools located in red zones.

To learn more, please see the page on the organization of educational activities

Presence of adult learners and students in centres as well as the possibility of continuing with distance learning:

  • Compliance with the current physical distancing rules, except in programs where it is impossible to do so, in which case adult learners/students and teachers must use the personal protective equipment recommended by the CNESST
  • In red zones, staff must wear procedural masks
  • A distance of 1.5 metres required between adult learners/students in classrooms when they are seated in a working position
  • A distance of 2 metres maintained in laboratories, cafeterias and libraries, as well as between adult learners/students and teachers
  • Possibility of organizing internships and training in the workplace while respecting the guidelines issued by the public health authorities

In-person school attendance is compulsory for all students unless, of course, the health situation requires a class or school to be closed.

Students who have a serious  health condition that makes them vulnerable to COVID‑19 may be exempt from compulsory physical attendance by providing a doctor’s note. Physicians have been informed by the public health authorities of which conditions may justify an absence from in-person attendance at school. Students living in the same household as a close family member who has a serious health condition that makes that person vulnerable to COVID‑19 may also be exempt. Parents of children who have been diagnosed with cancer are asked to read the recommendations of the Comité national de cancérologie pédiatrique for the COVID‑19 pandemic.

Students who cannot return to school in person will receive distance learning services. A doctor’s note is required.

All students residing in Québec and subject to compulsory school attendance, that is, students aged 6 to 16, must attend school, as prescribed in the Education Act.

Parents must take the necessary steps to ensure that their child meets the compulsory school education requirement.

  • Regular handwashing: at the beginning and end of the day, before and after meals, and before and after breaks and recess periods
  • Face coverings: see the information sheet (PDF 233 Kb)) about wearing face coverings in different contexts
  • Janitorial services: cleaning and disinfection that complies with the Guide d’intervention prévention et contrôle des infections dans les services de garde et écoles du Québec (MSSS, 2015)
  • Emergency kits containing a medical mask, a visor, a smock (gown), gloves and alcohol-based hand sanitizer available for use in response to a suspected case of COVID‑19 in a school
  • Specific arrangements to manage circulation and the use of specialized rooms (e.g. minimizing the use of these rooms by different groups on the same day, perhaps by scheduling the extended use of a given room) and cleaning of these rooms between groups, if applicable
  • Use of signage, particularly to facilitate circulation in hallways (e.g. one-way traffic)

Additional measures apply to schools located in red zones. To learn more, see the page on the organization of educational activities.

Preschoolers are not required to wear a face covering, either when in school or when using school transportation. However, they are allowed to do so.

Students in Elementary 1 to 4, inclusive, are not required to wear a face covering, either when in school or when using school transportation. However, it is recommended that they do so.

Students in Elementary 5 and 6 (Elementary Cycle Three) are required to wear a face covering outside of classrooms and in common areas of the school that are frequented by students from different class groups, as well as when using school transportation.

Students in secondary school are required to wear a face covering when circulating outside classrooms, in common areas and when in the presence of students who do not belong to their class group. These students are also required to wear a face covering when using school transportation or public transit (10 years of age or older).

Students in adult general education and vocational training are required to wear a face covering, unless they are seated in a classroom and are maintaining 1.5 m of distance from one another.

Schools located in red zones: Students in Elementary 5 and 6 as well as secondary school students are required to wear a face covering while using school transportation. Furthermore, all secondary school students are required to wear a face covering at all times, including in classrooms with their stable class group, on the school grounds and during optional courses with a different class group.

See the information sheet (PDF 233 Kb) on wearing face coverings in various other contexts.

The symptoms to look for are: fever, cough (new or worse), shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, sudden loss of sense of smell without nasal congestion (with or without a loss of taste), major fatigue, significant loss of appetite, general muscle pain (not related to physical exertion), nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach aches.

If a child shows these symptoms, they must remain at home and avoid contact with others. Parents must wait 24 hours to monitor the evolution of symptoms. After this 24-hour observation period, parents must use the self-assessment tool at Québec.ca/decisioncovid19 or contact 1-877-644-4545 and follow the instructions given to determine if their child must be tested for COVID‑19 or if they can return to school.

Parents are responsible for providing their child with a face covering.

If, for an exceptional reason, a student forgets their face covering at home, the school can provide one from their supply. However, this is a backup measure only.

Students are encouraged to make sure they have their own face covering when it is time to wear it at school.

Staff must wear a mask at all times when circulating outside classrooms in elementary and secondary schools.

Preschool teachers (Kindergarten for 4-year-olds and 5-year-olds) must wear personal protective equipment in classrooms, where physical distancing between teachers and students is not required.

At all other grade levels of elementary and secondary school, staff are not required to wear a mask in classrooms as long as the 2 m distance between them and the students is respected.

In schools located in red zones, wearing a mask is mandatory for all school staff at all times in common areas, rooms used by staff and on the school grounds.

See the information sheet (PDF 233 Kb) on wearing face coverings in various other contexts.

No. Like teachers and any other individuals showing symptoms of COVID-19, students must stay home and determine whether they need to take a test by using the self-assessment tool to evaluate their symptoms or by calling 1-877-644-4545. These resources will indicate where it is possible to have a sample taken for a COVID‑19 test. The location of the testing sites depends on the organization of services in each region.

However, the public health authorities may decide to carry out screening (testing of individuals without symptoms) in certain schools in order to determine the situation regarding the transmission of COVID-19 in response to an outbreak. In that case, it is possible that a specialized team will be sent to the school to carry out this screening.

If a child is showing one or more symptoms that justify being kept at home, it is strongly suggested that the child be tested. Please note that a child showing symptoms at school can be sent home. The criteria for returning to school (leaving isolation) vary based on the diagnosis. In the case of a positive COVID-19 diagnosis, isolation can only end when the following three conditions are met:

  • at least 10 days have elapsed since the onset of symptoms
  • improvement of symptoms for at least 24 hours (excluding cough and loss of sense of smell or taste, which may last longer)
  • absence of fever for 48 hours (without having taken fever-reducing medication)

All parents and school staff are automatically informed by the educational institution when a confirmed case of COVID‑19 is diagnosed at the school.

  • The public health authorities will proceed with an investigation once the positive diagnosis of COVID-19 is confirmed.
  • Depending on the identified level of risk, parents of students who had contact considered to be low risk will only be asked to monitor symptoms for a period of 14 days after the contact.
  • Individuals who had contact considered moderate to high risk will be asked to self-isolate at home for 14 days following the exposure and undergo a screening test.

must stay at home and avoid contact with others.

Staff members can assess their COVID‑19 symptoms by using the self-assessment tool at Québec.ca/decisioncovid19 or by calling 1-877-644-4545 and following the instructions given to determine if they must be tested or if they can return to school.

If the staff member receives a diagnosis of COVID‑19, the public health authorities will identify any close contacts that took place at the school, with the help of the person involved, the administration and the staff of the school. Based on the level of risk, the contacts will be informed and instructions will be provided to them.

All parents and school staff are automatically informed by the educational institution when a case of COVID‑19 is diagnosed at a school.

Supply teachers must respect the same health guidelines as the rest of the staff in order to reduce the potential spread of the virus.

As long as these guidelines are followed, the public health authorities do not consider there to be a major risk.

Educational institutions must evaluate each situation based on its specific circumstances. They are welcome to assess the possibility of teachers continuing to work remotely.

If the situation is outside of the employee’s control and it is impossible for them to return to school, their salary is minimally maintained in accordance with the known and agreed-upon schedule in the work contract.

  • All parents and school staff are automatically contacted by the educational institution when a case of COVID‑19 is confirmed at the school.
  • With help from the student’s parents or the staff member concerned, and the school administration, the public health authorities will follow up with contact tracing at the school.
  •  Anyone considered to be at moderate to high risk will be informed by the public health authorities, removed from the school and tested.
  • Anyone considered to be at low risk may continue to attend school and must monitor their symptoms for the next 14 days.
  • Support in the form of distance education is provided to students who are removed from school.
  • It is possible that intervention measures may be intensified (closing a classroom, closing a school, etc.) based on the public health authorities’ analysis of virus transmission in the school and on the epidemiological factors specific to the school or region.
  • With help from the administration, teachers, school staff and the student concerned or their parents, the public health authorities will follow up with contact tracing at the school.
  • Anyone considered to be at low risk will be informed by the school.
  • Anyone considered to be at moderate to high risk will be informed by the regional public health authorities, removed from the school and tested.
  • In collaboration with the school administration, the regional public health authorities will made the necessary recommendations and indicate whether a classroom or school should be closed based on the situation.
  • Students who are removed from school will be provided with remote pedagogical support.

It is possible that intervention measures may be intensified (closing a classroom, closing a school, etc.) based on the public health authorities’ analysis of virus transmission in the school and on the epidemiological factors specific to the school or region.

If a class or a school must be closed, staff will continue to work full-time and a minimum number of distance teaching hours per week will be guaranteed.

A student who is removed from class after showing symptoms (e.g. a student placed in 14-day isolation) will continue to be followed by their regular teachers, provided they are not too ill to do schoolwork. The teacher may provide them with work, but they are not subject to the minimum number of hours of educational services. The teacher will contact the parents to follow up on the student during this short period.

In the event of an outbreak in a school, the public health authorities may choose to fully confine certain groups or the entire school. Contrary to last spring, when only pedagogical support services were offered, educational services to students will continue this fall, meaning that school attendance will continue to be compulsory, but in a different format: distance learning.

In such an event, teachers will continue to work with the students in the groups they have been assigned to, but this work will take place partially through distance learning. The number of hours dedicated to distance learning will vary based on the students’ grade level, and students will also be required to do some independent work each day. Thus, students will do several hours of distance learning as well as individual work on a daily basis.

In addition, the teacher’s workload will allow for time to carry out personalized follow-up with students. This will enable teachers not only to work with the larger group, but also to provide students with more personalized support. To ensure that all students have access to distance learning with their teachers, schools will be able to lend students the digital equipment they need.

These measures will ensure that educational services can continue and that students can continue to learn new content, rather than simply consolidating prior learning as they did in the spring.

Additionally, a student whose health is such that a physician has determined it would be too great a risk for them to attend school is entitled to the same minimum number of hours of educational services, the support of a designated teacher for distance learning and school assignments, in accordance with the student’s health and capabilities. The designated teacher will not be this student’s regular teacher, but will be another teacher whose role will be to support students in this exceptional health situation. Students entitled to this measure will be required to submit a doctor’s note to their school.

Each school service centre, school board and private educational institution has prepared an emergency protocol, which is a tool for planning the rapid organization and implementation of educational services in the event of a closure.

This protocol must cover the following six aspects: management; communication; material and information resources; educational services; support for students with disabilities, social maladjustments or learning difficulties and for students with specific needs; and support with regard to mental health and well-being.

Teaching would be required to continue if schools were to close. The distance education services required based on students’ needs are managed locally, in compliance with the applicable collective agreements.

Staff will continue to work full-time and a minimum weekly number of hours of distance learning will be set.

Contrary to last spring, students will continue to learn new content, rather than simply consolidating prior learning.

Distance learning must be offered to students who are unable to return to school. These services will be overseen by the school service centre, school board or private educational institution attended by these students. The required complementary educational services must also be offered, if necessary.

The school service centre, school board or private educational institution, in collaboration with the school team, must create a plan to provide educational and complementary services to students who have fallen significantly behind. These services include:

  • Consolidation of learning planned for the start of the school year and that provides a significant amount of remedial instruction before introducing new content in order to bridge any possible gaps
  • The implementation of a protocol for welcoming vulnerable students, including students with disabilities, social maladjustments or learning difficulties, and their families in order to create a personal connection with these families
  • Paying close attention to the specialized services required to mitigate the negative impacts of the COVID-19 lockdown (falling behind, anxiety, loneliness, etc.), such as remedial education and psychosocial services

Updated individual education plans (IEP) are required for students with disabilities, social maladjustments or learning difficulties to enable them to adjust to their new reality.

Yes. School service centres and school boards are responsible for loaning the necessary equipment to students who do not have it at home in order to ensure that these students can continue to learn remotely. To support educational institutions in acquiring equipment and loaning it to students, the Ministère de l’Éducation has made additional funding available to the school system.

The Ministère is also creating a reserve supply of technological equipment consisting of 15 000 tablets and 15 000 laptops to support the education network in its efforts. This equipment is intended for students who cannot attend school in person and who do not have their own equipment at home. School service centres and school boards may use this equipment if they are unable to meet students’ needs by relying on their own inventory or orders.

School service centres and school boards are also providing IT support to students and parents who require assistance in using technological equipment and digital tools. The Ministère is also taking steps to establish a call centre. This IT support will be available to students who have borrowed equipment and attend a school under the jurisdiction of a service centre or school board that is subscribed to this service, as well to their parents.

Families remain responsible for establishing and paying for an Internet connection. Students may download educational materials using a public Internet hotspot or their school’s Wi-Fi connection. Institutions may also provide students with LTE mobile Internet keys. Families are invited to contact their school if they have needs related to digital equipment.

Additionally, in areas where Internet service is not available or is insufficient for distance education, students in Secondary III, IV and V can continue to attend school in person.

To help the school network ensure that all students throughout Québec have access to computer equipment, the government has taken special measures to set up an emergency reserve supply consisting of 30 000 devices. 

Priority access to this equipment is given to students who:  

  • do not have access to computer equipment 
  • do not have exclusive access to computer equipment 
  • are in Secondary IV or V and attending school according to an alternating schedule 
  • are at risk (at-risk students are those at the preschool, elementary and secondary levels who are vulnerable in ways that may affect their learning, success, behaviour or socialization)
  • have disabilities, social maladjustments or learning difficulties 

This special reserve supply supplements the devices already acquired by the school network. So far, the network has acquired approximately 200 000 devices in preparation for the beginning of the school year. Orders will continue to be placed in the coming weeks. 

School service centres and English school boards are providing technical support to students who must continue their education through distance learning. 

Steps are also being taken to set up a call centre to help organizations in the network with their efforts in this regard.

Memory aids for each program of study have been made available to all educational service departments of school service centres and school boards. These tools aim to support education consultants and teachers in targeting essential learning, at both the elementary and secondary levels, in order to complete the 2019-2020 school year. They are equally helpful during the catch-up period in fall 2020 in targeting essential learning based on each student’s needs.

Training aimed at supporting the education network throughout the next school year is also available. This training offers a new look at the principles, concepts, processes, approaches and strategies used in the teaching profession. It will also provide food for thought on how to prepare for and proceed with the new school year. The training videos are available on the Ministère’s YouTube channel and can be viewed at any time. The training will consist of three parts:

  • Learning and Enabling Learning: Embracing and Implementing Curricula
  • Identifying Students' Needs to Adjust Educational Planning
  • Differentiated Instruction Through Pedagogical Flexibility: A Response to Mixed-Ability Classrooms

Employees with a health condition or in an age bracket that makes them vulnerable to COVID‑19 (chronic disease, severe immunodeficiency, pregnancy or aged 70 or older) are exempted.

As employers, school service centres and school boards are responsible for managing their human resources based on their own needs and in compliance with the legal frameworks and collective agreements. They can also turn to their pool of supply teachers, which may be extensive.

In an effort to prevent and counter the negative impacts of a teacher shortage, the Ministère has taken various steps over the last few years to promote the teaching profession and foster the recruitment of competent and qualified individuals, including adding a web page with information about teaching jobs.

  • The physical distancing rules of 1 metre between class groups and 2 metres between students and adults must be respected during indoor and outdoor activities.
  • As it is difficult to avoid touching your face with your hands, especially during physical and sports activities, it is recommended that shared objects or equipment be disinfected between each use by a different class group.

For schools located in green, yellow and orange zones, no more than two students can be seated on the same bench, bringing the total number of students who can be on board a school bus at the same time to 48.

  • Siblings should be seated together on the same bench.
  • The same two students should remain seated together on the same bench every day, if possible.
  • Students in Elementary Cycle Three (Elementary 5 and 6) and secondary school are required to wear a face covering when using school transportation. Students in preschool education and in Elementary Cycles One and Two may wear face coverings when using school transportation, if they wish to do so.
  • It is recommended that alcohol-based hand sanitizer be available to students when boarding the vehicle.
  • The vehicle must be fully cleaned every day.
  • If a vehicle must be used for more than one run in the morning or afternoon, the areas most frequently touched by students must be disinfected (e.g. tops of seat backs, handrail).

For schools located in red zones, as often as possible, there should only be one student per bench. Students must also remain seated in their assigned seat.

Parents who can bring their children themselves are encouraged to do so.

Transportation providers must implement the school transportation recommendations made by the CNESST. School bus drivers will have access to the necessary personal protective equipment, such as masks and eye protection. The installation of a clear plastic barrier could be an additional option to ensure their safety.

Are school daycare services still available in their current form?

School daycare services have resumed their regular activities (regular fees, regular 1-to-20 student-educator ratio), while complying with the health guidelines issued by the public health authorities. Each school will implement the guidelines based on its respective situation.

For schools in red zones, school daycare services must be organized based on the principle of stable class group or by creating, if necessary, subgroups, provided a 2-metre physical distance is maintained or they are separated from each other by physical barriers.

All health measures implemented in schools also apply to school daycare services. In addition, students from the same stable class groups should be placed in the same daycare groups, wherever possible.

Organization of activities in higher education in 2020-2021

Students were able to begin or continue their studies during the fall 2020 term in spite of the exceptional and unprecedented context that is COVID-19. Student perseverance and educational success along with the health and safety of everyone in each school community remain the top priority of both the Ministère and the entire higher education network.

Yes. The ministerial guidelines sent to colleges and universities made a point of asking them to organize their spaces and schedules in order to allow a maximum number of students to return to campus for the fall 2020 term and to offer the student community as many in-person teaching activities and support services as possible, especially for students who are beginning their studies or who have disabilities or special needs. This organizational planning must be in line with the current guidelines issued by the public health authorities, specifically those concerning maintaining a physical distance between individuals and wearing a mask or face covering.

As of October 8, institutions of higher education in red zones will be required to take the necessary steps to minimize the movement of staff and students on campuses. For more information, consult the higher education page on Québec.ca.

The in-person activity offer may vary depending on an institution’s programs, departments and campuses, and in light of its specific characteristics (heritage building, building located downtown, organization of spaces, tight spaces, etc.). It may also vary based on whether the institution is located in a green, yellow or orange zone, or in a red zone. The administration of each institution has implemented the appropriate measures that best allow for a maximum number of activities to take place on campus, while taking into account the institution’s specific characteristics as well as the guidelines issued by the public health authorities.

All institutions of higher education have prepared an emergency protocol that can be rolled out quickly should the second wave of the virus or a local outbreak force campuses to close partially or completely. Among other things, this protocol must plan for staff to continue working and for support services offered to students to be maintained so as to ensure the continuation of teaching activities.

Yes. Since August 24, individuals aged 10 and older must wear a mask or face covering in many closed indoor spaces, including CEGEPs, colleges and universities. A mask or face covering must be worn in these spaces at all times but may be removed when individuals are seated in a classroom or the library or when they are eating, for example, provided the required physical distance is maintained.

Like all educational institutions, the Ministère has the health and safety of the occupants of student residences at heart. For this reason, and to guide institutions in producing their health protocol for student residences, the Ministère and representatives from the college and university networks worked together to establish common guidelines, which were then adapted by the public health authorities based on recommendations from the Institut national de santé publique du Québec. These guidelines are flexible and are intended to help educational institutions to make decisions that are best adapted to the management of their residences. We recommend that you contact your institution for further details.