Rod Stewart's son Alistair is to start school in Essex via videolink.

The 66-year-old singer is keen for the five year old, his son with wife Penny Lancaster-Stewart, to have a British education even though he is about to embark on a two-year concert residency at Las Vegas' Caesar's Palace hotel and casino.

So Alistair will become one of the first pupils to trial a new internet-based distance learning system at the £2,335-a-year Coopersale Hall School in Epping, Essex.

Despite being based 5,000 miles away with his parents and six-month-old brother Aiden, Alistair will be able to sit in on lessons at the educational establishment, download class work, discuss it with a teacher and have it marked.

Headteacher Matthew Hagger told The Sun newspaper: "We have a wide mix of children and sometimes pupils have to be away for a couple of weeks over term time. This system sits well with their time and needs."

The family will return to the UK - where they have a house near the school - in three months when the 'Maggie May' hitmaker finishes his first three-month concert run, and Alistair is then expected to attend Coopersale Hall on a full-time basis.

Rod - who has eight children with five different women - became a grandfather for the first time after his daughter Kimberly, 32, gave birth to baby daughter Delilah, her child with actor Benicio Del Toro, last Sunday (21.08.11).

He said in a statement: "My joy is indescribable."