LAKES REGION — The number of COVID-19 cases at schools continues to rise nearly two weeks after students and staff returned from the Thanksgiving break.

New cases of the virus appeared in every school district in the Lakes Region this week except Sebago Public Schools, which has only one case as of Dec. 9.

RSU 14 has the highest cumulative case count to date with 18 positive cases, four of which were among remote students and eight of which are currently active, according to the district’s COVID-19 dashboard.

There are 116 individuals in quarantine as of Tuesday afternoon’s update.

There were five new cases this week alone, with two individuals each at Windham High School and Windham Primary School and one individual at Windham Middle School. Two of the individuals were not on campus during the infectious period, said Superintendent Chris Howell in a letter to the community.

The two other individuals were last on campus Dec. 3 and have sent 55 students and seven staff members from Windham Middle and High schools to remote learning until Dec. 14.

WHS remains an open outbreak site, according to the Department of Education’s dashboard. A school campus is considered to have an open outbreak when there are three or more cases over a 14-day period. An investigation is closed when there are no new cases over 28 days.

Howell announced Wednesday afternoon that the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention has opened an outbreak investigation at WMS.

“In the very near future, we will be working with our case management team to review all of the cases that have happened to date. If the Maine CDC has any concerns about cases being connected, we will take the necessary steps to inform the community,” Howell said.

The last day of instruction for all cohorts enrolled in hybrid learning – part-time in person, part-time remote – is Dec. 22.

At SAD 6, an individual at Bonny Eagle High School and one at Bonny Eagle Middle School tested positive for the coronavirus this week. Since Nov. 26, three other individuals across the district have tested positive. In total, there are 58 students and 20 staff members in quarantine.

In one instance, 18 students across three schools had to quarantine when a BEMS student on the same bus route tested positive.

Two staff members from SAD 61’s transportation department have tested positive for COVID-19 since Dec. 2. All students and staff considered close contacts will be able to return to in-person learning by Dec. 15.

On Tuesday, a Lake Region Middle School student tested positive. All close contacts will continue with remote learning until Dec. 14.

Lake Region School District recorded its first case of COVID-19 Nov. 29.

Three students from Gray-New Gloucester schools have tested positive over the last two weeks, but had no impact on other students or staff, said Superintendent Craig King.

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