A MIDDLESBROUGH school has sent 36 pupils and eight members of staff home amid fears they have been exposed to the coronavirus after they returned home from a skiing trip in Northern Italy.

The pupils and staff from Trinity Catholic College in Saltersgill Avenue, Middlesbrough have been told to stay at home and quarantine themselves.

In a letter to parents, headteacher Louise Dwyer, said: ‘Over the February half term holiday 36 pupils and eight members of staff travelled to Verona in Northern Italy on a ski trip.

'As you might be aware some of Northern Italy has been affected by coronavirus.

'The health and safety of our pupils is of paramount importance to us therefore I have taken the decision to send home the pupils that have travelled to Northern Italy whilst I await further guidance.’

The Northern Echo:

Hugh Hegarty, CEO of the Nicholas Postgate Catholic Academy Trust, which the school is a part of, said: “Schools across the UK who have had skiing trips over the half term based on advice given have sent pupils home, after possible exposure of the coronavirus. We have taken the precautionary measure to minimise any risk whatsoever.

“Many schools have closed – with the ongoing issue. We have taken any appropriate action for our children and staff’s welfare and well-being.”

Earlier today it was reported that students from Carmel College in Darlington who were returning from a skiing trip in Italy were also sent home to self-quarantine themselves for two weeks.

The Northern Echo has contacted Carmel College for comment.