A SECONDARY school near Ludlow says it is unable to open as normal until the end of term after more teachers were forced to self-isolate.

Wigmore High School, near the Herefordshire-Shropshire border, reported a coronavirus outbreak "on a different scale" earlier this week, with more than 10 cases in year 10.

On top of that, the school said it had been "managing a constant stream of staff" unable to attend school after being told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace.

Headteacher Rob Patterson said on Wednesday: "In most of these cases it appears to be totally unrelated to the school, but the impact is now quite serious.

"We currently have 15 staff who are not able to attend school for one reason or another and, importantly, a number of these are in our catering team.

"Sadly, this will have a significant impact on our ability to provide meals in school from tomorrow (Thursday)."

In an update on Friday, he said he was sorry to tell parents Wigmore High School was "no longer able to continue to operate normally until the end of term after we heard of further staff absence overnight".

He said in order to ensure the safety and wellbeing of all students, the school would only be open for students who are not self-isolating in years seven, eight and nine 7, 8 and 9 on Monday (July 19) and Tuesday (July 20).

Dr Patterson also said three more year 10 students had tested positive for coronavirus.

"We intend to continue with the planned activity days for key stage three children next week and Wigmore Primary School will be open as normal," he added.

"Once again, apologies that circumstances have led to this extraordinary measure."

John Kyrle High School in Ross-on-Wye was forced to close on Monday due to coronavirsu, and Herefordshire Council said on Friday that 1,300 pupils in the county were thought to be self-isolating.

Businesses and organisations across the UK spoke out about the problems of the NHS Test and Trace app this week, with staff self-isolating after being "pinged".

Downing Street insisted the NHS coronavirus app was working as it was “designed”, and rejected mounting calls to act to prevent a surge in workers and medics being forced into self-isolation over coronavirus contacts.

No 10 declined to shorten the month-long delay between when most restrictions end on so-called “freedom day” on Monday and the quarantine rules being eased for the double-jabbed.

Employers warned of a looming staffing crisis, which could compound pressure on the NHS, with some staff asked to put holidays on hold due to the rising number of patients.

Amid warnings of a “pingdemic”, fully-vaccinated individuals will be exempt from having to quarantine over close contacts, but the change will not be introduced until August 16.

Ministers were said to be examining whether to make the NHS app less sensitive, with 530,126 alerts sent in England and Wales during the first week of July.

But Downing Street appeared to dampen hopes that any changes could be made to reduce the number of pings in the coming days.