READFIELD — Students at Maranacook Community High School returned to their classrooms Monday following two weeks of remote learning due to an increase in COVID-19 cases.

The school switched to remote learning after a spike in COVID-19 cases caused it to face a staffing shortage, according to Jay Charette, superintendent for Regional School Unit 38, which enrolls students from Manchester, Mount Vernon, Readfield and Wayne.

Charette said the “return of health and well-being of staff made it possible to reopen” Monday.

No new cases were reported Monday, and Charette said he expected no issues for the remainder of the week.

As of Friday, the district had 20 cases of COVID-19: Two at Maranacook Community High School; 12 at Maranacook Community Middle School; and six between Readfield Elementary School, Manchester Elementary School, Mount Vernon Elementary School and Wayne Elementary School.

On Monday, the school still had seven staff members with COVID-19, but they were not limiting the high school’s ability to stay open, Charette said.

Previously, there were not enough staff members to run the main office, operate the food service or provide substitute teachers for teachers who were out sick.

Although the high school was back to in-person learning Monday, the school is to remain in “outbreak status” until April 15, according to officials.

The Maine Center for Disease Control & Prevention designates a school in “outbreak status” if more than 15% of its students and staff members are absent.

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