Young royals Prince George and Princess Charlotte have been drawn into the escalating global coronavirus outbreak, with pupils at their school in isolation amid fears they have contracted the deadly infection.
Four pupils from St Thomas’s Battersea School in south-west London – attended by both Cambridge children – have been told to stay home amid fears they might have COVID-19.
Two of the children are said to have developed flu-like symptoms after returning from a school trip to Italy. All four students are in isolation until their test results come back.
The coronavirus is spreading rapidly in Italy, which is the centre of the worst outbreak outside China.
Twelve people infected with COVID-19 have died in Italy since Friday, all of them elderly. The country has 447 confirmed cases, including five children aged under 15.
A school spokesperson said the potential risks of the virus were being taken seriously.
“To this end we are following the government’s instructions to the letter on infection prevention and case management in which it is suspected that some staff member or students exposed to the virus or showing any symptoms,” the spokesperson told London Loves Business.
“We currently have a very small number of students who have been evaluated and these individuals currently … remain in their homes waiting to receive the results of their exams.
“All parents have been informed and we have maintained regular communication with our school community to ensure that councils are shared and important information circulated.
“Of course, we will preserve the confidentiality of staff and students, and we will not comment on specific cases.”
At least eight schools across Britain have closed this week following the outbreak of the virus in Italy. Others have sent pupils home amid fears they might have been exposed to deadly virus on trips to Europe.
However, Public Health England said its general advice was not to close schools.