SCHOOLS across Romsey and Hampshire have revealed their action plans to ensure pupils' education stays on track after the nation was thrown into a third lockdown.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced on Monday night the speed the new variant was spreading at was frustrating and alarming.

The new rules mean the public is allowed out only for a few reasons - medical assistance, essential shopping, essential work, escaping domestic abuse among them.

However, key workers and vulnerable children are still allowed to attend school, while all other students will receive remote education.

This comes as GCSE, AS and A-level exams in England will be replaced by school-based assessments, Education Secretary Gavin Williamson said.

His comments in the House of Commons came after the Government announced that schools and colleges in England would be closed until mid-February.

Executive leader of Gateway Multi-Academy Trust, Jonathan de Sausmarez, which runs The Romsey School, Romsey Community School and Oakfield Primary in Totton said nearly 80 pupils will be supported in person and, in anticipation for online learning to begin this week, staff were ready to teach online on Tuesday.

He said before England was put into lockdown The Romsey School, Greatbridge Road, was prepared to test up to 1,400 secondary school pupils per week as part of a mass testing programme.

He added: "The new variant of Covid-19 has led to vast increases in infections and, while we would have welcomed more time to implement the changes, we can see that this was a decision that had to be made in the national interest."

Meanwhile, at Halterworth Primary School, Halterworth Lane, teachers are arranging a daily 'Google Meet' catch-up session with all of their class who are at home in an effort to stay connected with pupils.

Their emotional literacy support assistant has remote catch-up meetings or phone calls with pupils and families to support those who may find lockdown difficult.

A spokesperson from the school said some staff have been arranging short video calls with households just to listen to children read, or to read them stories.

The Mountbatten School, Whitenap Lane, told the Advertiser they have 90 children coming to school each day, while online learning, including live-streamed learning, is in place for students working at home.

Associate headteacher, Christopher Cox, said: "Requiring schools to close to students was not something that anyone wanted.

"However, the new variant of the infection, clearly posed a growing risk to the health of people in our community and there were increasing concerns about projected hospital admissions. Like all schools, we will work tirelessly to minimize the effects of the lockdown on their students."