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Belgium Extends School Holiday in Attempt to Break Virus Wave

  • Kindergartens, primary schools to close one week earlier
  • Indoor events will be capped at 200 participants from Monday
An empty classroom at the Henriette Dachsbeck primary school in central Brussels

An empty classroom at the Henriette Dachsbeck primary school in central Brussels

Photographer: Hatim Kaghat/AFP/Getty Images

Belgium ordered primary schools to extend the Christmas holiday in its third attempt to break a Covid-19 wave that’s among the worst in Europe after experts singled out unvaccinated children as a catalyst of infections in broader society.

Virtual schooling will be required at least half of the time for children 12 years and older starting Monday, Prime Minister Alexander De Croo said at a briefing in Brussels. Other new measures include a ban on indoor events with more than 200 participants, and a mandate to wear masks from the age of six.