PARIS — Maine Vocational Region 11 is finalizing its plans to reopen Oxford Hills Technical School on Aug. 31.

“We intend to provide in-person instruction for students enrolled in full technical programs at OHTS,” said Program Director Paul Bickford. “The nature of our courses is hands-on and experiential, but we are also working on ways for students to attend remotely.

“Our plans are tentative for now. They may be altered and still need to be approved our Board of Directors.”

Bickford said that the school’s goal is for fully enrolled OHTS students have the option to attend class in-person full-time.  OHTS serves sophomores, juniors and seniors from Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School and Buckfield Junior/Senior High School.

“We typically have smaller class sizes in larger spaces for longer periods of time that should allow us to meet health and safety guidelines outlined by the Maine Department of Education and Maine Center for Disease Control,” said Bickford. “We expect that our programs will be operating [on-site] even if our sending schools have different plans for reopening.”

Once the MVR 11 Board of Directors approves the plan for the technical school to reopen, administrators will contact students and their families with the information and prepare for them to communicate their preference for in-school or remote learning. Bickford did not provide dates for providing notices or deadlines for registration.

“As of now, enrollment is in line with our expectations prior to the pandemic,” said Bickford.  “By offering in-person and remote options, we hope to maintain that level. Many programs offer internship opportunities for third-year students, and we will continue to offer these internships wherever possible and feasible.”

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