Category Archives: Charter School Commission

Statewide symposium to focus on Civil War legacies in Maine

As part of the major collaborative project funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Maine Historical Society and the Maine Humanities Council will host a Civil War Symposium focusing on Maine after the war. The half-day event will be held at the Morgan Hill Event Center in Hermon from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 10.

Topics will include population decline; out-migration and its economic impact; cultural aspects of the post-Civil War era; and why the Civil War still affects us 150 years later. Speakers include: Senior Policy Advisor to Governor Paul R. LePage Tom Desjardin; Associate Professor of History at Georgetown University Chandra Manning; Holocaust and Human Rights Center of Maine Program Director David Greenham,; and musician, writer and teacher Josephine Cameron,.

Tickets are $10 for adults and $7 for students. Advance registration is required and contact hours will be available.

Maine ASCD hosts Pathways to Proficiency Spring Conference

Traveling from as far south as York and from as far north as Caribou, 135 educators attended the Maine Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD) Spring Conference in Brewer this week to network and learn from the efforts of their colleagues as they transition to proficiency-based education and proficiency-based diplomas.
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School Facility Management System to go offline June 30

In an effort to reduce the burden of unfunded education mandates, the Legislature recently accepted the Department’s recommendation to repeal the requirement that the Maine DOE provide a facilities maintenance template and capital planning software to school units. Therefore, the School Facility Management System (SFMS) will no longer be available after June 30, the end date of the current contract with VFA, Inc., the software provider.
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Schools sought to participate in paper-pencil research study

Approximately 150 schools from across the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium including Maine are being recruited to participate in the Paper-Pencil Research Study. Each participating school will be asked to administer one or two test forms to two classes in grades 3 and 6. A classroom will be assigned a single content area and form. The total testing time for any given student as part of the study is expected to be approximately 90 minutes. Testing can be scheduled at the school to occur anytime during the testing window, currently scheduled to begin May 12.

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Educators invited to Holocaust and Human Rights Center of Maine’s Summer Seminar

K-12 educators and librarians are invited to attend the Holocaust and Human Rights Center of Maine’s (HHRC) 24th annual Summer Seminar July 7-11. The seminar, Relevant Lessons of the Holocaust and Human Rights, will meet Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Friday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Michael Klahr Center in Augusta.

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Longfellow teacher selected for National Geographic Teacher Fellowship

Kelley Holmes, a teacher at Longfellow Elementary School in Portland, has been selected as one of this year’s Lindblad Expeditions and National Geographic Education Grosvenor Teacher Fellows.

The 25 fellows from the United States and Canada will embark on Lindblad voyages aboard National Geographic Explorer for a hands-on experience.

Holmes teaches first and second grade. She is participating in an ongoing collaboration with Project Zero of the Harvard Graduate School of Education to design lessons and units that develop students’ global competence.

Each year, K-12 educators are encouraged to apply for the fellowship program. Those chosen enhance their geographic learning through direct, hands-on field experience and bring that knowledge back to their classrooms and communities.

The fellows will travel later this year on eight- to 14-day expeditions to locations including Arctic Svalbard, Iceland, Greenland, the Canadian Maritimes and Antarctica. They will experience firsthand local landscapes, wildlife and cultures by hiking, kayaking, Zodiac excursions and cultural outings.

Led by Lindblad-National Geographic expedition team members, a National Geographic photographer and an undersea specialist, the fellows will gain knowledge to develop activities and lesson plans for their classrooms and to share with professional colleagues and communities upon returning home.

Before their expeditions, the fellows will travel to Washington, D.C., for a pre-voyage workshop with hands-on sessions on outreach planning and photography as well as opportunities to learn about the ship, meet Lindblad Expeditions’ naturalists and network with previous years’ fellows.

Tripp Middle School wins top nutrition award

TURNER – Tripp Middle School is the first middle school in Maine to earn a Gold Medal in the US Department of Agriculture’s HealthierUS School Challenge.

Students and staff at the RSU 52 school were presented the prestigious award last week by USDA Under Secretary for Food, Nutrition, and Consumer Services Kevin Concannon at an assembly also attended by Maine DOE’s Gail Lombardi.
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2014 Educator Talent Pool recommendations deadline coming up

The Maine DOE is accepting recommendations for the 2014 Maine Educator Talent Pool through May 2.

The Talent Pool is made up of teachers and principals who may be considered for membership on local and state advisory boards and task forces, along with special recognition opportunities through the Maine DOE.
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Education Commissioner applauds expansion of student learning opportunities

The Maine Charter School Commission voted today to approve the state’s first virtual charter school, which could begin start serving students this fall

AUGUSTA – Education Commissioner Jim Rier released the following statement today in response to the Maine Charter School Commission’s approval of the state’s first public virtual charter school.

The unanimous approval authorizes the independent Commission to enter into contract negotiations with Maine Connections Academy, which plans to start serving as many as 300 students from across the state this fall. Continue reading

Charter Commission to vote on applications March 3

The Maine Charter School Commission will vote at its March 3 meeting on whether to move forward the applications of three public charter schools proposed to open in Maine this fall. Continue reading