All schools in China should delay the start of the spring semester to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus outbreak, the Ministry of Education said on Monday night.
Centrally administered universities should postpone the start of the new semester, and the exact date for the spring semester should be in line with other locally administered universities, the ministry said.
Students who have returned to their hometown for the Spring Festival should not go back to school without permission, it said.
Locally administered universities, all secondary and primary schools and kindergartens should also delay their spring semester and local education authorities should decide how long the delay will be, the ministry said.
Students are advised not to go outside, attend or host gatherings during the winter holiday.
Schools should take epidemic prevention and control measures for students who have stayed at school for the holiday, it said.
All schools should make contingency plans to control and prevent the epidemic after the spring semester starts, keep daily records of students and teachers, and improve their sanitary conditions, the ministry added.