(BCN) – Mt. Diablo Unified School District is changing teacher assignments at elementary schools because of a recent increase in students enrolling in the district’s remote learning program as COVID-19 cases have also spiked amid the more contagious delta variant of COVID-19, Superintendent Adam Clark said Thursday.

In a letter to the district community, Clark said the number of people enrolling in its independent study program has swelled along with the number of COVID cases reported recently.

Before Aug. 11, about 150 students were enrolled in the program, but nearly 500 more have transferred since then from in-person instruction to the remote program. As a result, some elementary school classes are merging and some teachers will move to independent study instruction, Clark said.

The newly formed classes will not exceed limits set in the teachers’ union contracts, he said.

“I completely understand the frustration, concerns and disappointment that families and teachers are feeling as these shifts take place and I am truly sorry this is so upsetting,” Clark said.

“We are moving teachers to follow the kids. I understand that this shift will cause a disruption, but this is a common occurrence in districts throughout the state as they adjust to actual classroom enrollment after the school year begins,” he said.

The district is updating its COVID cases reported at each campus, tap here.