Last-minute guidance released Wednesday from the Baker administration strongly suggests that low-risk communities should start the school year with in-person learning — contradicting the latest reopening plan for Island public schools, which would not have all kids back in classrooms until nearly November.

In a letter sent to school superintendents throughout the state, Department of Elementary and Secondary Education commissioner Jeffrey Riley wrote that districts should follow guidelines based on their local municipality’s Covid-19 incidence rate per 100,000 residents over the past two weeks.

New data from the state, released Tuesday, uses a color-coded green, yellow and red metric to determine whether a school district should open with remote or in-person learning. The guidance from Commissioner Riley states that districts in the red, which have a current rate of more than eight cases per 100,000 residents, should start with remote learning. Districts in the yellow, which have an incidence rate of between five and eight cases per 100,000 residents, should start with remote or hybrid learning. There are 33 communities throughout the state in the red or yellow.

The 318 other communities in the commonwealth — which either have fewer than five cases over the past two weeks or fewer than five cases per 100,000 residents — are in the green, or unclassified, and should start the school year with in-person learning, according to the state. All six towns on the Vineyard are in the unclassified, low-risk threshold for the transmission of Covid-19.

“It is our expectation that districts’ learning models will follow this color-coded metric unless there are extenuating circumstances identified after consultation with local boards of health,” Commissioner Riley wrote.

Vineyard schools superintendent Dr. Matthew D’Andrea could not immediately be reached for comment Wednesday, by telephone or email.

But the latest reopening plan for the Vineyard, crafted by school administrators and due for a final vote by the all-Island school committee Thursday, is far different from what the state is recommending, based on the incidence rate for the Island. The reopening plan would start the school year with remote learning and gradually phase children back into classrooms for two days per week in a hybrid model. While younger kids would begin the hybrid learning program at the end of September, middle school and high school students would not be back in classrooms until Oct. 27 — nearly six weeks later than the state currently suggests.

The reopening plan has been discussed extensively in a series of recent all-Island school committee meetings, and has been largely guided by Island public health officials and a health and wellness committee appointed by Mr. D’Andrea.

A vote on the final version of the plan is scheduled for Thursday afternoon. The plan is due to the state by Friday. Two previously scheduled votes on the plan were delayed by the committee.

At press briefings over the past weeks, Gov. Charlie Baker has consistently advocated for most schools to open for in-person learning, considering the health and public safety metrics throughout the state. Previous guidance from the state released in July has also requested that school districts prioritize in-person learning, even as they requested school districts to submit a remote, an in-person and a hybrid learning model by the beginning of August.

School leaders on the Vineyard labored to create the plans during various subcommittee meetings, task forces and through parent and teacher surveys over the past two months before presenting their phased option — a blend of hybrid and remote learning models — at a meeting two weeks ago. The health and wellness task force concluded that neither the regional high school nor the Tisbury School had adequate space to conduct in-person learning considering social-distancing rules, making in-person models challenging.

In the letter Wednesday, Commissioner Riley suggested that school districts should use the new guidance to inform the final plans they are required to submit to the state by Friday — posing a potential eleventh-hour dilemma for Vineyard school leaders.

“We understand that local school committees and governing boards, working with district and school leaders, have recently finalized or are about to finalize initial fall reopening plans. We expect these updated metrics and related guidance will support your decision-making both for school reopening and throughout the year if we encounter changing circumstances,” the letter says.

The new guidance comes as superintendents are forced to weigh the concerns from both parents and teachers about the fall. Teachers unions have campaigned for remote instruction, while some parents have expressed challenges with remote learning, expressing a preference for an in-person learning model.

Mr. Riley added in the letter that districts would have the option of altering their plans after seeing multiple data reports on the incidence of Covid-19 in their communities — but hinted that the guidance should be a factor in their final decisions.

“While districts and schools may choose to make immediate adjustments to initial fall reopening plans based on this data, districts may also wait for multiple data reports and allow for further time for consultation before making these updates,” he wrote.. “We acknowledge that you have much to consider as to how best to serve our students in ways that are safe for students, teachers, staff, families, and the community at large. It is our hope that this additional guidance can support you in these critical decisions.”