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Mass. reports 682 new coronavirus cases among public school students, 228 among school staff members

A total of 8,677 cases among students and 5,358 among staff members have been reported to the state since Sept. 24

A classroom at Boston Preparatory Charter School in Boston.
A classroom at Boston Preparatory Charter School in Boston.Craig F. Walker/Globe Staff/The Boston Globe

Local school officials in Massachusetts reported to the state 682 new coronavirus cases among students and 228 among school staff members for the week that ended Wednesday.

The combined total of new cases — 910 — was the highest weekly total since mid-to-late January. Officials estimate that about 450,000 students across the state are attending some form of in-person learning, and about 75,000 staff members are working in buildings.

Cases are only reported among students who are attending in-person school; cases among students in a fully remote learning model are not being tracked by the state. Cases among staff members are only being reported if the employee was inside a school building within the seven days prior to the reported case.

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Among the highest number of cases reported in a single school or district for the week ending Wednesday, North Attleborough Public Schools reported 28 cases among students and three among staff members, Braintree Public Schools reported 24 cases among students and five among staff members, and Framingham Public Schools reported 21 cases among students and 8 among staff members.

The latest figures, released Thursday, include any cases reported to the state Department of Elementary and Secondary Education between March 18 and 24. State education officials are not tracking when the cases occur, only when local school officials report them to the state.

Starting the week that ended Oct. 21, local school districts are required to report their coronavirus cases to state education officials. The first three reports released by the state did not require districts to report their cases.

Combined, a total of 8,677 cases among students and 5,358 among staff members have been reported to the state.

Schools have not appeared to be superspreading locations for the coronavirus, state leaders have repeatedly said this fall, though they said in early December they had identified at least 75 clusters. They believe about half of those clusters could have been linked to in-school transmission.

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Felicia Gans can be reached at felicia.gans@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @FeliciaGans.