A Southampton school – now run by a former Isle of Wight headteacher – has been closed over fears of a coronavirus outbreak.

St Mary’s Independent School in Southampton is currently on lockdown after some pupils – who have just returned from a trip to China – showed symptoms of the virus.

It’s understood that a family with children in both the prep and senior departments of the school had developed symptoms after recently travelling to the area of China most affected.

After being seen by doctors at the nearby Southampton General Hospital, they have now been placed in isolation, according to the Daily Mail.

The school is closed for three days so it can undergo a ‘deep clean’.

Headteacher, Claire Charlemagne, was previously in charge of the former Sandown Bay Academy – now The Bay CE School.

Ms Charlemagne left the school in August 2017, after 18 months at the helm. She cited personal and family reasons for her decision to leave the Island.

Speaking about the potential outbreak in a statement, Ms Charlemagne said:

“I am sorry to inform you that a family with children at the prep and senior departments who have recently travelled to the region affected by coronavirus have developed symptoms similar to those presenting with the coronavirus, and having been checked by medical professionals at Southampton General Hospital have been placed in isolation.

“As a school, our first priority is to keep our children and community safe.

“We have taken advice on this situation from Public Health England and the Natural Health Service.

“We have been advised that we need to take all steps reasonably practicable to prevent the spread of this virus. We have therefore taken the decision to close the school immediately in order to undertake a thorough deep clean, and to allow any potential traces of the virus to be removed.”

The school closed yesterday (Monday) and will re-open on Thursday.

The private school educates 250 pupils aged between three and 16.