Scottish school exams may still go ahead at institutions that have social distancing measures in place, according to the Education secretary.

John Swinney admitted it would be “difficult” for pupils to sit National and Higher tests at schools across the country after plans were put in place to close all institutions from Monday amid Coronavirus fears.

However, he acknowledged those that have stringent policies for separating students in place could be utilised as he set out three options currently being considered by the Scottish Government to end the academic year.

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Mr Swinney said a delay on final exams or “alternative certification” methods based on coursework and/or prelims were also being considered.

He is expected to confirm the Government’s course of action at Holyrood later on Thursday after taking advice from the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA).

Speaking on the BBC’s Good Morning Scotland, Mr Swinney admitted he suspected that schools would be closed for the whole of the summer term.

He told the programme: “It may be possible [for exams to continue] with proper social distancing in place in schools but it is logistically very different to our normal way of running exams.

“Delaying the exam diet is an option we can consider but there is an uncertainty as we don't know how long this is going to go on for.

“All options are being considered as we speak.”

Mr Swinney said additional digital learning provisions would be made available to children to continue their education at home, adding the Government was working with both the BBC and their UK counterparts to broaden “educational television”.

However, he acknowledged some schools would have to work more closely with pupils who did not have access to broadband.

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He added the Scottish government would give legislative consent to the sweeping new emergency powers being pushed through at Westminster.

He said: "We really are in uncharted territory. We support those provisions because we believe them to be necessary for the circumstances that we face.

"The key thing here is to understand our learners and to make sure we have the resources and arrangements in place that enable all of them to sustain their learning."

Mr Swinney is due to update parliament at around 2pm on Thursday.