Category Archives: Funding

Commissioner’s Update – January 22, 2015

From the Maine Department of Education

The Maine DOE has selected one of the state’s leading learning technology integrators and a 30-year veteran educator to head its Learning Through Technology Team, which administers the groundbreaking 1:1 Maine Learning Technology Initiative (MLTI).

Dr. Mike Muir, who now serves as the Multiple Pathways Director for the Auburn School Department, will join the Maine DOE starting Jan. 26. In his current role in Auburn, Muir supported the district’s large scale school change initiatives, including customized, performance-based learning; shared leadership teams; proficiency-based professional development; and one of the first 1:1 primary grades iPad initiatives.

Prior to his tenure in Auburn, he worked as a mathematics teacher in Winslow and Skowhegan, and later as a practicum supervisor and professor of middle grades education and educational technology at the University of Maine at Farmington.

While this is the first time Muir has worked for the Maine DOE, he has long been an advocate of MLTI and a leader in integrating technology provided by the State into the classroom to improving teaching and learning.

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Notices and Reporting

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News & Views

Nominations sought for 2016 Maine Teacher of the Year

Members of the public can enter educators who demonstrate a commitment to excellence and nurturing the achievement of all students at www.mainetoy.org through Feb. 20. | More

LePage Administration proposes public charter school funding fix

The LePage Administration is proposing legislation that would have the Maine DOE make monthly payments directly to approved public charter schools starting in FY16, the same way the Department has long distributed funds to traditional public school districts. | More

Schoolwide Plan due, Department schedules guidance webinar

The Maine DOE is hosting a webinar next month to provide guidance to Title I schools as they complete their Schoolwide Plan, which now must be submitted to the Department. | More

Maine FFA students discover Agricultural Trades Show

Student leaders from the Maine FFA Association (formerly known as “Future Farmers of America”) traveled to the 74th annual Maine Agricultural Trades Show at the Augusta Civic Center last week. | More

Maine teachers invited to apply for STEM scholarship

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Alumni Club of Maine is inviting Maine middle school and high school science and engineering teachers to apply for Club scholarships to the MIT Science and Engineering Program for Teachers (SEPT). | More

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LePage Administration proposes public charter school funding fix

The LePage Administration is proposing legislation that would have the Maine DOE make monthly payments directly to approved public charter schools starting in FY16, the same way the Department has long distributed funds to traditional public school districts. Currently, districts that lose students to public charter schools are billed directly by the receiving charter school.

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Schoolwide Plan due, Department schedules webinar

The Maine DOE is hosting a webinar next month to provide guidance to Title I schools as they complete their Schoolwide Plan, which now must be submitted to the Department.

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Commissioner’s Update – January 15, 2015

From the Maine Department of Education

The Maine DOE is releasing additional new resources to support the development and implementation of Performance Evaluation and Professional Growth (PEPG) systems. The new resources build upon those released last month and include Leader Evaluation and Professional Growth (LEPG) modules and a presentation specifically for special educators.

Among the previously released resources were educator training modules produced in collaboration with American Institutes of Research and the Department has now additionally added the last three modules in the State LEPG module series. Though each of the modules is aligned with the details of the State PEPG model for teachers or the State PEPG model for principals, they can be adapted by local districts as needed. The modules are located on the State Teacher PEPG and State Principal PEPG pages of the Educator Effectiveness website.

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Notices and Reporting

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News & Views

Maine DOE publishes applied learning lesson plans

The Department has published 30 lesson plans that support hands-on, applied learning for Maine’s middle school students. | More

Connecting classroom to math assessment focus of February Department workshops

The Maine DOE is inviting math educators to one of the six workshops the Department will host across the state next month focused on connecting the classroom to the new online Maine Education Assessment developed by Smarter Balanced. | More

EPS Commission releases final report

The Commission to Strengthen the Adequacy and Equity of Certain Cost Components of the School Funding Formula has released its final report. | More

Educators invited to Maine DOE winter wellness workshop

The Maine DOE is hosting a one-day workshop next month focused on supporting the development and implementation of successful school-based health promotion programs. | More

Department webinar to overview new assessment accommodations

The Maine DOE will host a webinar on Jan. 23 to overview the features and accommodations that will be available with the new online Maine Educational Assessment for Mathematics and English Language Arts/Literacy developed by Smarter Balanced. | More

U.S. Office of Civil Rights releases guidance on the obligations to EL students

The Maine DOE is encouraging review of new guidance released by the U.S. Office of Civil Rights on the obligations to English learner students. | More

Department reminds schools of pest control reporting, upcoming training

The Maine DOE is reminding all schools serving K-12 students that they are required to appoint a staff member to be the Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Coordinator. | More

Department reminds district leaders EDFacts Staff Survey past due

The Department is asking districts that have not yet completed their 2013-14 EDFacts Annual Academic Staff Survey to do so before the statewide data is uploaded to the U.S. Department of Education. | More

iOS 8 compatible secure browser for assessment available soon

The Maine DOE is aware that the secure browser application that will be used for the administration of the Maine Educational Assessment for Mathematics and English Language Arts/Literacy developed by Smarter Balanced is currently not compatible with iOS 8. | More

January is Invite Your Maine Legislator to School Month

Schools are encouraged to invite legislators to visit classrooms and meet with teachers, administrators and students this month. | More

Maine students selected for United States Senate Youth Program

Two Maine students will travel to Washington, D.C. for a week in March to serve as delegates to the United States Senate Youth Program (USSYP). | More

Bucksport High School recognized for academic excellence

Bucksport High School has been honored as a National BARR School of Academic Excellence. | More

Nominations due Feb. 1 for Maine’s History Teacher of the Year

The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, Preserve America and the History Channel annually recognize outstanding American history teachers at the state and national levels. | More

College For Every Student awards to help underserved students become college, career ready

College For Every Student (CFES) has received funding to provide five low-income middle or high schools with Closing the Gap awards. | More

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EPS Commission releases final report

The Commission to Strengthen the Adequacy and Equity of Certain Cost Components of the School Funding Formula, often referred to as the EPS Commission, has released its final report.

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Bucksport High School recognized for academic excellence

Bucksport High School has been honored as a National BARR School of Academic Excellence. The school has been implementing BUILDING ASSETS, REDUCING RISKS (or “BARR”), a social emotional learning model that has been proven to decrease educational disparities while increasing achievement for all students.

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College For Every Student awards to help underserved students become college, career ready

College For Every Student (CFES) has received funding to provide five low-income middle or high schools with Closing the Gap awards that will help underserved students become college and career ready.

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Commissioner’s Update – December 11, 2014

From the Maine Department of Education

The Maine Department of Education has been awarded $14.8 million to expand public preschool opportunities in 10 counties.

Over the next four years, the Department will pass 95 percent of the funds awarded by the U.S. Department of Education to 13 school districts with high percentages of low-income students so they can establish or expand preschool programs in partnership with local early childhood program providers.

In total, 33 new classrooms will be created with the funding and most will open next September, adding to Maine’s existing 205 classrooms serving 4-year-old students. Another 23 classrooms already in operation will be expanded so students can attend five days a week for the full day. With up to 16 students per preschool classroom, the award can potentially allow access to early childhood education to more than 500 additional Maine children.

Participating districts include Lewiston, Millinocket, Sanford, Westbrook, SAD 58 (Phillips, Strong and Kingfield) and RSU 3 (Brooks, Liberty, Monroe and Unity), 12 (Chelsea and Somerville), 13 (Rockland), 37 (Addison, Harrington and Milbridge), 39 (Limestone), 49 (Albion and Clinton), 53 (Pittsfield) and 74 (Anson, North Anson and Solon).

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Notices and Reporting

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News & Views

Maine DOE launches web resources for assessment

The Maine DOE has launched a new section on its website with resources related to the new online Maine Educational Assessment for Mathematics and English Language Arts/Literacy as well as a portal developed by its vendor for assessment administration. | More

Maine DOE offers regional assessment administration workshops

The Maine DOE is offering four regional workshops in January to support school districts as they prepare for the spring administration of the Maine Educational Assessment for Mathematics and English Language Arts/Literacy. | More

Maine DOE releases resources to support new educator evaluation system development

The Maine DOE has released new online resources to support school administrative units (SAUs) in designing and implementing Performance Evaluation and Professional Growth (PEPG) systems. | More

Student art submissions sought for MLTI screensaver contest

The Maine DOE is seeking artwork created by students to feature next year on the screensavers of the thousands of devices it provides to Maine schools through the Maine Learning Technology Initiative (MLTI). | More

Cooking with USDA Foods webinar on Dec. 18

School food service professionals are encouraged to register for the webinar K-12 Cooking with USDA Foods with White House Champions of Change chefs Garrett Berdan, Carlin Breinig and Cyndie Story on Dec. 18. | More

Maine schools receive funds to purchase local foods from local farmers

Projects in RSU 18 and Downeast Maine have been awarded funds from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to bring more food grown by local farmers to students. | More

Students invited to do service projects to benefit Toys for Tots

Maine schools are invited to engage students in service to others through the 2014 Joy Maker Challenge this holiday season. | More

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Maine schools receive funds to purchase local foods from local farmers

Projects in RSU 18 and Downeast Maine have been awarded funds from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to bring more food grown by local farmers to students.

RSU 18 will receive $44,213 through the USDA’s Farm to School grant program, and Healthy Acadia will receive $100,000.

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Maine DOE awarded $14.8 million to expand public preschool access

The Department will pass a majority of the money to 13 school districts to create 33 new classrooms for 4-year-old students and expand 23 others

AUGUSTA – The Maine Department of Education has been awarded $14.8 million to expand public preschool opportunities in 10 counties.

Over the next four years, the Department will pass 95 percent of the funds awarded by the U.S. Department of Education to 13 school districts with high percentages of low-income students so they can establish or expand preschool programs in partnership with local early childhood program providers. Continue reading