Italy is on Thursday embarking its shutdown of all schools and universities after emergency measures are implemented due to the coronavirus outbreak.
Cinemas, theatres and museums are also closed across the country while its Serie A football league will be played in empty stadiums.
More than 3,000 people have been infected, making it the worst-hit country on the continent.
According to Education Minister, Lucia Azzolina, Schools and universities will be shuttered until at least 15 March.
Reactions to the school closures have been mixed.
“I hoped for this decree because I feared an outbreak at school,” Massimiliano Del Ninno, father of a Rome primary school student, told Reuters news agency.
Clarissa Mazzei, a 30-year-old mother of three, called it “tragic… for the students, and also for the parents.”