A WINCHESTER school has warned that year groups could be forced to remain at home and resume online learning as a number of staff and pupils are self-isolating due to Covid.

Western C of E Primary School headteacher Peter Burbridge sent a letter to parents on Wednesday after they received an ‘NHS Warn and Inform letter’ from the school.

In the letter, seen by the Chronicle, Mr Burbridge said: “Unfortunately we do now have a number of staff (as well as pupils), who are currently self-isolating as a result of Covid and as you will appreciate, this puts a huge strain on available staff in school. I feel it is only fair to highlight the situation and inform you that, we may very soon be in a position where we do not have enough staff to actually cover and/or teach some classes across the school, if further staff become unwell and are required to self isolate.

“If and when we reach this point, we will sadly need to ask some year groups to remain at home and resume online learning with the staff we have available. I appreciate this is not an ideal situation but based on the current situation, this is a real possibility and I feel that to give you as much notice as possible is the correct thing to do. Therefore, I would ask that you look into such arrangements now, so that you are prepared for this at short notice.

“Naturally, we will do our best to avoid this at all costs but ask for your additional support with this matter.”

It is not known how many students and staff from the primary school are currently self-isolating.

The Chronicle has contacted the school for a comment on the situation.

One parent told the Chronicle: "I really understand the difficult position the school is in and I know the head does all he can to ensure Western remains open with the Covid isolation rules that he has to follow.

"However, when we have effective vaccines there needs to come a time when Covid must take second place to children being in class. My own daughter has lost more than six months of her education - she will never get that time back.

"We have to learn to live with this virus better and fully acknowledge the further damage being done to young people if school closures continue."

The school is in Winchester West district, that covers Weeke and Fulflood, and where Covid numbers of rising.

The latest figure in the week to November 13 shows 36 cases, up four on the previous seven days, a 12 per cent rise, for a number per 100,000 people of 361.

The rise was the first reported since October 30. However, on November 1 the rolling rate per 100,000 was 803, showing how overall Covid numbers are falling.

READ MORE HERE: The latest Covid numbers for Winchester district