Plans to convert the regional high school’s main athletic field to artificial turf, narrowly approved by the Martha’s Vineyard Commission last month after a months-long exhaustive review that included dozens of hours of public testimony, are now being questioned by the Oak Bluffs planning board.

At an online meeting scheduled for 6 p.m. Wednesday, the board’s single agenda item is a review of whether the project requires a special permit from the town.

The issue surfaced during a report at the monthly meeting of the regional high school district committee meeting Monday.

“It was our understanding that we did not need to file for a special permit,” high school committee chairman Amy Houghton told the Gazette Tuesday, citing the Dover Amendment, a Massachusetts law exempting religious, educational and agricultural facilities from certain local zoning regulations.

“The special permit then allows the planning board to investigate things that have already been reviewed by the commission,” Ms. Houghton said. “In my opinion, that would be unfortunate,” she added, noting that the process has been in long in the works, and costs are mounting.

But Ms. Houghton added: “That’s why we have the legal system and we have rules . . . We need to be really careful about what we’re doing here.”

Years in the making, the high school fields project has been extremely divisive in the Island community.

In other school news Monday, buses are rolling, students and teachers are wearing their masks and vaccination rates are high across the Island, superintendent Matt D’Andrea said as he reviewed the full reopening of Island campuses for the first September since 2019.

“Masking is going very well,” Mr. D’Andrea said, adding thanks to both students and parents for their cooperation.

Out of more than 500 district employees, Mr. d’Andrea said, 442 — nearly 97 per cent — have been vaccinated, according to responses to an all-staff survey.

“We have a very high vaccination rate,” he said, adding that President Biden’s vaccination mandate for employees of large companies does not currently apply to school systems.

Determining the vaccination rate among students has been more challenging, Mr. D’Andrea said, because large numbers of teens inoculated on the Island over the summer were here seasonally before returning to their own school districts.

“I have been working with the hospital on trying to get student numbers,” Mr. d’Andrea said. “We think it’s hovering around 70 per cent of those eligible.”

Only children over the age of 12 can be vaccinated under current federal rules.

The district’s Covid testing regime is off to a slow start because of a delay in state-supplied test kits, which have just begun to trickle in, the superintendent said.

“It’s been very challenging,” Mr. D’Andrea said. “The [state] department of education has been a little overwhelmed, but we are making progress.”

Mr. d’Andrea appealed to school parents to sign and return the consent forms that are required for students and staff to be tested.

“As of today we have more than 600 people who have consented,” he said. “We’re well on our way.”

A weekly report posted Thursdays on the school system website will provide the latest numbers of Covid-positive students and staff, Mr. D’Andrea said, and he will continue to host an online community forum Tuesdays at 5 p.m.

The nationwide shortage of school bus drivers is affecting Vineyard schools, but transportation director Mark Rivers has been keeping the routes staffed, Mr. D’Andrea told the committee.

A total of 2,197 students are enrolled across the Island, Mr. d’Andrea said, with 714 at the high school and 1,483 in town schools.