Public school classrooms will remain closed in Lewiston, Auburn, Portland and most other Maine school districts until at least April 27.

Superintendents in Lewiston and Auburn said they based the decision on guidance from the state Department of Education, based on Gov. Janet Mills’ declaration of a civil emergency. The Western Maine Superintendents Association agreed Friday to aim to reopen schools on April 27, apparently spurring a spate of announcements throughout the area.

Augusta, Bangor and Saco are among the other districts that said they will remain closed through Friday, April 24.

“We want to thank all of you for your continued support during these unprecedented times as we recognize the pressures school closure puts on your family,” Auburn Superintendent Katy Grondin said in a message posted on her district’s Facebook page. “We appreciate all your efforts to support students working at home, practicing social distancing and universal precautions as we work as a community to flatten the curve and to be safe and healthy.”

Officials closed the schools this month to help combat the spread of the potentially deadly coronavirus.

Lewiston Superintendent Todd Finn said in a message to the school community that Lewiston “will continue our nutrition program throughout the duration of this period. We will also continue to provide curricular options for families who choose to practice skills or enrich student development. This will entail an expanded suite of options that will be made available to all families to include optional direct instruction, guided practice, individual practice, and self-assessment.”

“We will communicate our technology distribution strategic plan for families who will require devices for their children to participate in optional curricular choices.” Finn said. “Look for detailed communication pertaining to our optional remote learning opportunities in the coming days.”

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