TEN children with flu-like symptoms have been told to self-isolate after a school ski trip to coronavirus-hit Italy.

Two Lancing College pupils reported “relevant symptoms” on Wednesday after a college trip to Sestriere resort in the Italian Alps.

But yesterday another eight children were told to self-isolate, a leaked email from headmaster Dominic Oliver to parents revealed.

Now all pupils and staff who went on the trip have been placed in self-isolation only a week before some are set to take exams.

“We have put in place arrangements for the self-isolation of all pupils and staff who went on the ski trip and who are not displaying any symptoms,” Mr Oliver wrote to parents.

“In light of the changed circumstances, we feel it is best to take a particularly cautious approach for the benefit of all those who were on the trip, and the broader school community.

“The NHS has been alerted and its processes, including decisions about testing, continue to be followed.

“It is important to bear in mind that the majority of those on the trip continue to feel entirely well.”

One Lancing College source told The Argus: “Year 10 pupils have mocks next week and sixth form students have mocks also.

“We’ve been pulled in for meetings and lots of teachers have been sent home.

“We’ve been told not to wear masks.”

The college's Sung Eucharist on Sunday has also been cancelled due to staff shortages.

A Lancing College spokeswoman said the school believed “erring on the side of caution” is the most sensible thing to do.

“In arranging for the self-isolation of all our pupils and staff who went on the recent ski-trip we have taken an approach that goes beyond the current general recommendations for schools,” she said.

“In all other respects, we continue to follow Government advice, operating as normal, with minimum disruption.

“The ski trip was to Sestriere, which is some 150 miles away from the areas of concern.

“Lessons in Lancing will continue to be taught as usual.

“Those pupils who are in self-isolation have no need for concern as they will be receiving remote tuition and contact from their teachers.”

The spokeswoman added pupils had been told not to wear masks because experts say they are ineffective against airborne viruses like coronavirus.

The news comes as three people tested positive for coronavirus in the UK yesterday, including the first confirmed case in Northern Ireland.

Experts have warned of school closures and cancelled sporting events as the disease spreads across the globe.

Eleven Italian towns in Lombardy and Veneto have been on lockdown since Sunday.

More than 500 coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Italy.