SCHOOLS have written to parents to ease their concerns about coronavirus.

Several Oxford schools have mentioned the global outbreak of the flu-like virus in parent newsletters, sharing advice from Public Health England (PHE).

Oxford Spires Academy in East Oxford circulated a letter specifically about the virus, and said the government had asked schools to share certain links and information with parents.

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The letter stated: "The Department for Education has asked us to share the following with you as parents/carers, please take the time to read this carefully.

"You should not be unduly worried about the possibility of your children catching the coronavirus.

"There is no reason why your children should not continue to attend their early years, school or further education setting as normal.

"We recognise that some families or children may be planning to travel to China during the half term period. Please seek additional advice if you are intending travel to China."

Families were encouraged to follow good hygiene practices such as regularly washing hands and always sneezing into a tissue, to stem the spread of the virus.

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Marianne Blake, principal of the school, wrote: "We will continue to monitor the situation closely. We are working with our [multi-academy] trust at Anthem to ensure that we have the most up to date guidance.

"We will then make sure that we share any updates of changes to advice with you if these are to change in the future.

"Thank you for your support, please share this guidance with your children and reassure them that there is nothing at this point to be unduly concerned about in regards to coronavirus."

In a newsletter circulated on Friday, New Hinksey CE Primary School in Oxford also mentioned coronavirus.

The letter stated: "We have been assured by the local authority that the government, NHS and Public Health England are fully prepared but that everyone can help by taking the usual precautionary measures that help slow the spread of almost any germs.

"Please encourage you children to follow these guidelines at all times: Always carry tissues to catch your cough or sneeze; bin/throw away safely any used tissues as quickly as possible; wash your hands often with soap and water."

Other Oxford schools to share government guidance about coronavirus include St Ebbe's CE Primary School and St Aloysius’ Catholic Primary School