A SECONDARY school in Herefordshire has closed its doors to most students amid "high and rising" coronavirus cases.

Kingstone High School said students would need to learn remotely from home as it was unable to continue teaching as normal.

Children of key workers, such as those whose parents work in the NHS, can continue to go to school, executive headteacher David Bennett said.

The school, with around 400 pupils, said the decision was made after discussions with Public Health England.

"Unfortunately, we have to announce the temporary move to remote learning at Kingstone High School, after discussion with Public Health England," Mr Bennett said.

"This is due to the high and rising numbers of positive PCR tests that mean we can no longer deliver ‘in person’ teaching to an appropriate quality because of staffing constraints and the proportion of students not in school, affecting the continuity of provision. 

"The change will be put into effect from today so that all students will now need to study online, at home, from Thursday, September 23 to Friday, October 1 inclusive.

"Therefore, students will return to face-to-face lessons on Monday, October 4. Mr Butler will be devising an online teaching schedule, which will be sent out to cover the time period concerned.  

"Students who are vulnerable or the children of key workers may continue to attend school."

The letter added: "Students in receipt of Free School Meals will receive their lunch if they are in school, otherwise parents or carers will be provided with a voucher via email.

"Please note that this closure is for the secondary site only and those of you who also have children in the primary school need to read the complementary letter sent out by Mrs Vigus."

Last week, Mr Bennett said a "number of students" had tested positive for Covid-19 and were isolating.

As a precautionary measure, new rules at the school were brought in.

All staff and students were asked to wear face coverings in corridors and the dining room, and students must go to school in their PE kit when they have PE.