Headteacher Mark Anstiss has said Felpham Community College will do all it can to ensure its students’ education overcomes the current disruption.
Speaking yesterday afternoon, Mr Anstiss said his staff were getting ready to do their best for their some 1,500 pupils after the college closes today.
The government has told all schools in England to shut indefinitely in a bid to limit the spread of the fatal coronavirus.
“After a period of uncertainty about schools in England, I am pleased with the government’s decision on Wednesday to close all UK schools.
“When we get further details about provision for key workers’ children and those on free school meals, the school will ensure we play our full part.
“The decision to cancel exams was obviously massively significant and leads to uncertainty for our students in Year 11 and Year 13,” he said.
“Our priority today and tomorrow is to reassure our students and help them keep calm. We don’t have the answers they may want currently – but things will become clearer in time.
“Going forward, our children will be able to continue their learning at home using work set by teachers remotely.
“Clearly, it’s important children do not fall behind in the weeks and months ahead and have some routine in their lives.
“We are facing an unsettled future, but the school will continue to support its students and serve our community as best we can.”
Ormiston Six Villages Academy principal Paul Slaughter has criticised the government’s decision.
He said in an email to parents on Wednesday evening: “I am still astounded about the decisions made, especially for our Year 11s, who have been working so hard.
“As a parent of a Year 11, I know there will be tears and anxieties about what the future holds. My thoughts are with them this evening.
“As announced previously, we will continue to support our community and will remain open to all key workers’ children if they wish to send them to school so they can, in turn, continue to look after the rest of us in the days and weeks ahead.
“To be clear, for the rest of our children from Monday, it will be time to follow advice and stay at home to suppress this horrible virus to protect our vulnerable and loved ones.
“We have already been preparing a move to online teaching and learning.
“Over the next few days, we will ramp up our resources and processes to ensure you are as able as families to continue to learn, develop and thrive in the face of these unprecedented times.”
The Regis School in Bognor Regis has used its website to ask parents to be ready for further messages about the situation.