A PARENT of a child at a school in Essex has tested positive for coronavirus.

Parents at Belfairs High School in Southend received an email from the school this morning.

It explained a family were self-isolating but the school would remain open following advice from Public Health England.

The school confirmed the child has not tested positive.

A parent of a child at the school who did not want to be named, said: "The email is very vague.

"It is very worrying that it is so close to home.

"I believe the public deserve to know the locations of the infected." 

The email, from The Legra Trust, which manages the school said: "I wanted to make you aware that the father of a student at  Belfairs Academy has tested positive for coronavirus. The child has NOT tested positive.

"Acting on advice, the family are self-isolating as a precaution.

"As you would expect, I have taken advice from Public Health England and the World Health Organisation who have made it clear to me that we should take no further action at this time.

"As ever, the health and safety of our children and staff remain a top priority. We will keep in regular contact with Public Health England and if advice changes, we will let you know immediately.

"In the meantime, if you or your child experience any symptoms (detailed on the attached poster), please contact NHS 111 for advice."

Independent councillor Trevor Harp, who oversees health, said: “If a case if identified, the first contact is director of public health who should be informed, then leader of council.

"As it is at the moment, the director of public health has had no contact from anybody to confirm this.

“We’ve not had any confirmation.”

On Sunday a person in Essex tested positive on Sunday. The patient had no relevant travel to an affected area.

Yesterday it was confirmed an older patient, reported to be a woman in her 70s, became the first person in the UK to die after being diagnosed with coronavirus.