How lockdown rules vary for children across Europe

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Unlike Spain, other European nations fighting the coronavirus pandemic allow children outdoors for brief periods.

Here are the measures taken across Europe regarding children, from the least restrictive to the strictest:

Youngest can go to school

Iceland has not imposed a lockdown and primary schools are open. High schools and universities are set to reopen on May 4.

In Sweden, primary schools have also remained open although with rules on social distancing in place. So far there is no date for when its high schools and universities will reopen.

Children set to return

Primary schools are closed in the rest of Europe and only a few nations have announced when they will open their doors again.

Denmark has reopened kindergartens and primary schools on April 15, while Norway will follow suit with kindergartens on April 20 and some of its primary schools on April 27.

Tiny Luxembourg wants to open both its kindergartens and primary schools on May 4. Greece will open its on May 10 followed by Estonia five days later.

While children cannot see their friends in class, they can still go outside for a walk or to exercise, at least with their families.

Restrictions by numbers

But the restrictions vary by country, often depending on age.

The Nordic countries, which are the most flexible, only set a limit on the number of people who can gather in public.

In Denmark and Finland, public crowds of more than 10 are banned, while in Norway, five is the maximum number.

Restrictions by age

In Poland and Bosnia, under-18s can only go outside if accompanied by an adult, while in Montenegro it is only children under 12 who must have an adult escort.

In North Macedonia, minors can only go outside alone between 1:00 pm and 3:00 pm, while in Serbia everyone regardless of age must be home by 5:00 pm on weekdays, and midnight on weekends.

Italy, which has the world's second-highest death toll, allows children to go outside if accompanied by a parent.

France requires everyone to carry a signed form explaining where they are headed and why, which in the case of minors must be signed by their parents.

Spain bans from leaving home altogether while adults are only allowed out to go to work if they can't do so from home, buy food, seek medical care or briefly walk their dog.

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© 2020 AFP

Citation: How lockdown rules vary for children across Europe (2020, April 15) retrieved 24 November 2020 from
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