Scarborough schools are closed but as of Monday, town offices were still open but people were asked to use online services to conduct town business when possible. Courtesy photo/Facebook

SCARBOROUGH — Following the concern about the spread of coronavirus, Scarborough Public Schools announced on March 14 that facilities will be shutting down until March 27.

According to a Facebook post containing the announcement, administration will continue to reassess the timeline for school closure.

Schools were open on March 16 and 17 for students to pick up their school-administered laptops or other personal items left behind for the weekend.

Additionally, “families currently participating in the School Nutrition Backpack Program will continue to be served,” said the post. “If you are experiencing new concerns around food security, please contact us at [email protected] or leave a message at 730-4700 to access support.”

Scarborough is among many other school districts in Maine to close for the next two weeks.

“We are in the process of setting up a centralized webpage for all things COVID-19, including our communications as well as optional learning ideas, resources and activities at www.scarboroughschools.org/covid19,” said the SPS announcement. “This link should be live by Tuesday, March 17. The resources will be there for when you and your children are ready to access them. Our intention is to provide opportunities to stay connected as a learning community.

“On Friday, March 20, we will reassess and make decisions about ongoing closures or the ability to reopen, and we will communicate that information to you,” said another post on Facebook. “At this time, the decision to close schools is a local decision based on what we are feeling is in the best interest of our community.”

Scarborough town offices remained open on Monday although that could change or be modified. On Monday morning, the town posted on it’s Facebook page, “We know that many of you will be coming to the Town Hall today to pay your property taxes. Please consider putting them in the mail or paying them online instead. Any tax payments that are postmarked today will be considered on time and if you include a stamped, addressed envelope we will send you a receipt. If you do want to bring them in we have a drop box set up outside to the right of the front door and another drop box inside the main entrance. Please use the hand sanitizing stations mounted to the walls inside the main entrance before conducting any business with our staff.”

Links for online services are: for property taxes, https://scarborough.munisselfservice.com/. Property tax payments postmarked by Monday, March 16, will be processed as on-time payments. To re-register your vehicle, visit https://www1.maine.gov/online/bmv/rapid-renewal/. Homestead exemption forms and other property tax exemption forms due in to our Assessing office by April 1 are available on our website, http://www.scarboroughmaine.org/departments/assessing/assessing-forms. These forms can be mailed in but do need to reach us by April 1.

Information about the coronavirus can be found on the Maine CDC page, at maine.gov/dhhs/mecdc/, which is updated as new information is discovered.

“The Maine CDC is preparing for the potential spread in Maine of the respiratory illness called COVID-19, caused by a novel (new) coronavirus,” says the page. “We urge Maine people to practice good hand hygiene, cover coughs and sneezes, and stay home if you are sick. If you are concerned that you have been exposed to COVID-19, call your health care provider, who will determine whether you should be tested and, as appropriate, submit a sample for testing.”

As of 11 a.m. March 16, there were nine confirmed positive cases of COVID-19 and nine presumptive positive tests, in the state of Maine, according to the Maine CDC website. The majority of cases, including one person under age 18, live in Cumberland County.

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