AUGUSTA, Maine — The Maine Department of Education (DOE) on Friday released its updated color-coded classifications for Maine counties, which shows the relative risk of COVID-19 transmission. York County has been reclassified from "yellow" to "green" in the update, citing "improved metrics" after being assessed by the Maine Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and the Maine CDC.
All other counties remain classified as green, the Maine DOE says. In last week's update, Oxford County was also moved back from yellow to green.
Maine DHHS and CDC's assessment shows York County demonstrates improved metrics, including a falling case rate per 10,000 of 4.67 and a lower positivity rate of 0.9 percent.
Maine DHHS and CDC continue to closely monitor Androscoggin County, along with Kennebec and Somerset Counties.
A yellow designation indicates a moderate level of community risk. With the designation, the Maine DOE asks schools to consider additional precautions, such as limiting numbers of people in school buildings at the same time, suspending all extracurricular or co-curricular activities including competitions between schools, limiting interaction through cohorting, or other measures based on the unique needs of each school community.
The color-coded system was implemented at the end of July to help give schools guidance on how to safely restart school amid the pandemic. All 16 counties got the initial go-ahead from the State, all receiving a "green" designation, though many districts opted for a hybrid model.
Here's how the classifications work:
- Green: relatively low risk of COVID-19 spread. Schools can consider in-person instruction with required health and safety measures.
- Yellow: elevated risk of COVID-19 spread. Schools should consider hybrid instructional models to try to limit the number of people in classrooms at the same time.
- Red: high risk of COVID-19 spread. In-person instruction is not advised.
The next update is scheduled for Friday, Oct. 23.