The education secretary, Gavin Williamson, will be ‘very happy to meet’ a Buckinghamshire-based MP to ensure that children who live in remote areas of the country will have access to fast broadband to complete their schoolwork.

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Buckingham MP Greg Smith questioned Mr Williamson in the House of Commons on January 6, after Prime Minister Boris Johnson confirmed on the evening of Monday, January 4, that children across the country will be prohibited from attending school due to the rapid increase of Covid cases and deaths following a new strand of the virus.

Instead, children will be studying through online classrooms as they did back in the Spring of last year when the first lockdown came into place.

Mr Smith said: “I commend my right honourable friend for the work being done to roll out online learning, but for a significant proportion of my constituents there is a small practical problem.

“Up to 13 per cent of households either have very slow broadband or no access to it at all, and mobile data is non-existent in many villages.

“What practical support can he offer pupils living in such households, competing against other members of the household and trying to work or learn with no or little broadband?

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The education secretary, Gavin Williamson, replied: "This is an incredibly challenging problem for many people living in rural communities.

“I would be very happy to meet my honourable friend to discuss what further measures we could take.

“I am beginning to think about some of the additional resources of textbooks and other resources that can maybe be made available to families and communities that have these acute problems, where it may not be something we can work around in terms of a technical solution.

“There may be other routes forward, but I will ask my department to organise swiftly a meeting between him and me to discuss this issue and any other educational issues in his constituency. "

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The lockdown mirrors what the country went through between March to June last year, but with the vaccine now available, the Government is hoping that restrictions could be eased by the middle of February.