THERE are no plans to close schools, colleges or early years provision, according to council authorities. 

A Brighton and Hove City Council spokesman confirmed the schools would stay open amid growing calls shut down the institutions over coronavirus fears.

A petition demanding schools and colleges be closed in the UK has now been signed by more than 300,000 people.

The council spokesman said: “There are currently no plans to close schools, colleges or early years provision in Brighton & Hove. 


"We continue to be guided by Public Health England and central government advice on this. We’re ready to respond to developments.

“The situation around Covid-19 is fast moving. 

"We will support headteachers and governors to manage this on a school-by-school basis working on individual contingency plans based on specific needs in line with national guidance.”

The announcement comes as the Republic of Ireland announced it is to close its schools and colleges.

Irish prime minister Taoiseach said the measures take effect from 6pm on Thursday until March 29.

The Republic of Ireland has had 43 confirmed cases and one death. 

The UK has had 460 cases and eight deaths.Close Schools/Colleges down for an appropriate amount of time amidst COVID19.

Worried parents are calling on auhtroities to limit the spread of the virus by closing UK schools.

The "Close Schools/Colleges down for an appropriate amount of time amidst COVID19" petition states: 

"We would like the government to at least consider closing schools/colleges down in the coming weeks or as soon as possible, in addition to taking necessary actions to prevent further spread.

We would like the Government or Parliament to enforce this action due to the growing fear among parents and students that attend school. 

"The ability to focus or concentrate is affected in addition to the growing fears of the Corona-virus. In our view, the government and health officials around the world are more 'reactive' rather than 'proactive'. 

"This will result in more spread as time is given for the virus to do so. We hope to come to an agreement as soon as possible in a timely manner."

Lloyd Russell-Moyle, MP for Brighton Kemptown, said he believes the Government will move into the "delay" phase later on today following an emergency meeting being held this afternoon.

This means the Government will start switching to tactics aimed at delaying its spread, rather than containing it. 

Delay is where the "social distancing" measures will be considered - which could include restrictions on public gatherings and people being told to work from home.