Category Archives: Accountability

Department continues to seek feedback on ESEA waiver in advance of renewal

In preparation for Maine’s application for a renewal of its existing ESEA waiver, the Department continues to seek feedback on how the State’s current accountability and improvement system is serving Maine’s students and schools.

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Maine DOE reminds educators of MEA administration resources, new trainings

The following Priority Notice was sent to District/System Administrators, School Test Coordinators and Technology Directors on March 2 to highlight resources from the Maine DOE to support the successful administration of the upcoming State assessment, as well as announce upcoming regional technical assistance sessions.

Dear District/System Administrators, School Test Coordinators and Technology Directors,

With the window for giving the new online Maine Educational Assessment (MEA) for Mathematics and English Language Arts/Literacy developed by Smarter Balanced opening in just two weeks, we want to make sure you have the resources you need to feel prepared for a successful test administration.

On our assessment website, you can find an extensive library of administration materials. With so many supports available, we wanted to draw your attention to a few including: Continue reading

Maine DOE renews efforts to support local change

The following Priority Notice was sent on Monday, Feb. 23 to inform Maine educators about the efforts of the Maine DOE to support the continued quality implementation of key initiatives that will improve teaching and learning in Maine, including the administration of new assessments, educator evaluation and the awarding of proficiency-based diplomas.

Dear Educators,

Welcome back from a well-deserved February break. As you know, in recent years the Department has successfully advocated for reforms that strengthen accountability, best practices and choice. The result is that our increasingly learner-centered schools will better prepare students for success in college, career and civic life.

Never before has more been expected of Maine students. The same could be said for our schools. Continue reading

Nominations due Feb. 20 for next Maine Teacher of the Year

The nomination deadline is just days away for the 2016 Maine Teacher of the Year.

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Maine DOE recommends, rather than requires, assessment keyboards

The Maine DOE is pleased to announce that mechanical keyboards, while still recommended based on the best interest of some students, will no longer be required for the online administration starting next month of the new Maine Educational Assessment for Mathematics and English Language Arts/Literacy developed by Smarter Balanced. Continue reading

Commissioner’s Update – February 5, 2015

From the Maine Department of Education

There are many benefits to an online administration of the new Maine Educational Assessment for Mathematics and English Language Arts/Literacy developed by Smarter Balanced. The computer delivery will better allow students to demonstrate critical and higher-order thinking skills; more accurately measure where students are; give educators and parents more timely information to inform instruction; and allow for a more efficient, cost-effective administration.

As a result, the Department is highly recommending schools give the test electronically but understands there may be individual students who are unable to access the assessment using a computer (e.g., medical reason for avoiding screen viewing). For those cases, the Maine DOE is providing a procedure for requesting a paper-pencil version of the assessment.

Please note, this is a different process than requesting to provide a schoolwide paper-pencil administration of the assessment, which only a few schools did by yesterday’s deadline.

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Notices and Reporting

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News & Views

Acting Commissioner Tom Desjardin shares a laugh while talking with young students at his alma mater, Washburn Elementary. He was joined on the first stop of his tour yesterday of Auburn schools by his first grade teacher, Mrs. Bristol, who retired from that district in 2005. To invite the Acting Commissioner to see how your school is putting students first, contact Maine DOE’s Communications Director at samantha.warren@maine.gov.

Acting Commissioner Tom Desjardin shares a laugh with students at his alma mater, Washburn Elementary. He was joined on the first stop of his tour yesterday of Auburn schools by his first grade teacher, Mrs. Bristol (at left), who retired from the district in 2005.

Acting Education Commissioner visits Auburn schools

Maine’s Acting Education Commissioner returned Wednesday to the Auburn schools he once attended to learn about their efforts to improve outcomes and to inspire students with his own story. | More

Maine DOE provides student roster guidance to ensure assessment administration success

Accurate student lists for this spring’s computer-based Maine Educational Assessment (MEA) Mathematics and English Language Arts/Literacy developed by Smarter Balanced will depend on ongoing collaboration between the Maine DOE and the local school districts. | More

Comprehensive School Health Education Spring Conference to focus on proficiency

The Maine DOE is inviting educators to its 2015 Comprehensive School Health Education Spring Conference, which will focus on transitioning health education curriculum to a proficiency-based system of learning. | More

Department encourages recognition of school counselors during National School Counseling Week

The Department is reminding Mainers about the unique contributions of professional school counselors and how students are more prepared for success in college and career as a result of what school counselors do as the nation recognizes National School Counseling Week. | More

Maine DOE releases webinar on College, Career and Civic Life Framework for Social Studies

Maine DOE has released a short webinar to provide educators with information about the College, Career and Civic Life (C3) Framework for Social Studies. | More

Inaugural Maine Science Festival scheduled for March 20-22 in Bangor

Maine educators, students and families are invited to attend the first annual Maine Science Festival in Bangor this March 20-22. Events include a Teen Tech Night, high school state science fair, science scavenger hunt around Bangor and sessions on science in children’s literature, crime scene investigation and the intersection of science and economic development. | More

Department hosts Summer Food Service Program trainings

In preparation for the fast approaching summer season, the Maine DOE’s Child Nutrition Services Team will offer Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) trainings through the state in the coming months. | More

Maine DOE promotes financial literacy education resources

As part of its ongoing efforts to support financial literacy education, the Maine DOE is encouraging educators to save the date for the 6th Annual Fostering Financial Education in Maine Schools Conference on May 1 in Rockland. | More

Maine Humanities Council announced Student Humanities Ambassadors

The Maine Humanities Council (MHC) announced that Abigayle Hopkins from Machias Memorial High School in Machias and Victoria Simons from Noble High School in Berwick are the first Student Humanities Ambassadors in Maine. | More

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LATEST DOE Career/Project Opportunities

Feb. 11 deadline to sign up students for paper-pencil assessment

The following Priority Notice was sent on Feb. 4 to District/System Administrators and School Coordinators for the Maine Educational Assessment for Mathematics and English Language Arts/Literacy developed by Smarter Balanced, alerting them of the Feb. 11 deadline by which to request individual students be provided paper-pencil tests.

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Acting Education Commissioner to visit Auburn schools

AUBURN – Maine’s Acting Education Commissioner will return Wednesday to the Auburn schools he once attended to learn about their efforts to improve outcomes and to inspire students with his own story.  

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Commissioner’s Update – January 29, 2015

From the Maine Department of Education

The Maine DOE will begin visits next month to provide targeted technical assistance to schools preparing to award proficiency-based diplomas.

Last May, the Department released six options by which districts could apply for extensions to fully implementing systems that support the awarding of proficiency-based diplomas starting in 2018 as a 2012 Maine law requires. Extension options five and six were designed for districts early in their transition and thus in need of the most structured support from the Maine DOE. It is the 50 or so districts who applied under one of those options, which extend full implementation to 2021, that will be visited by teams of up to four Department staff.

The half-day visits are intended to positively support schools in progress toward their benchmarks; identify and validate progress since the application; inform the Maine DOE of district needs; and as needed, to clarify Maine DOE understanding of district work and benchmarks.

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Notices and Reporting

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News & Views

Feb. 4 deadline for picking paper-pencil assessment administration

Maine schools wanting to give the upcoming Maine Educational Assessment for Mathematics and English Language Arts/Literacy developed by Smarter Balanced as a paper-pencil test rather than online must let the Department know by Wednesday, Feb. 4. So far, only one school has indicated they will do so. | More

Department seeks feedback on ESEA waiver in advance of renewal

In preparation for Maine’s application for a renewal of its existing ESEA waiver, the Department is seeking feedback on how the State’s current accountability and improvement system is serving Maine’s students and schools. | More

Maine DOE posts video of assessment administration training

Maine educators who will be helping to administer the upcoming online State assessment but couldn’t attend one of the Department’s recent regional workshops can now see the entire training online. The Maine DOE has posted a four-hour video on its YouTube channel filmed at the southern Maine workshop session on Friday, Jan. 16. | More

iOS 8 compatible secure browser available for assessment administration

An iOS 8 compatible secure browser application that will be used for the upcoming administration of the Maine Educational Assessment for Mathematics and English Language Arts/Literacy is now available. | More

Outstanding educators sought for Maine talent pool

The Maine DOE is seeking recommendations through May 1 for the 2015 Maine Educator Talent Pool. | More

Transition Career Exploration Workshop available

The Maine DOE’s State Personnel Development Grant and the Maine Department of Labor’s Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) have partnered to offer schools a free e-workshop that helps students discover employment possibilities. | More

ACCESS for ELLs® testing window closes, materials due to MetriTech

The ACCESS for ELLs® testing window is set to close Friday, Jan. 30 and districts are required to pack and return all testing material to MetriTech by Feb. 6. | More

Department, State Board reopens rules related to exams for educator credentialing

The Maine DOE and the State Board of Education have reopened for further public comments the rules regarding the qualifying examinations for credentialing purposes for teachers, educational specialists and administrators. | More

Department reschedules NEO facilities training sessions

A NEO facilities training has been rescheduled to Feb. 12 due a snowstorm this week. | More

Requirements change for bus driver physicals

The Maine DOE has updated its physical form for bus drivers, which can be found here on the Department’s website along with instructions. | More

Maine students invited to share vision in digital storytelling challenge

Maine schools are invited to enter a free digital storytelling competition that asks students to share their visions for the future. | More

More Dispatches | Press Releases | From the Commissioner


LATEST DOE Career/Project Opportunities

Department posts video of recent assessment administration training

Maine educators who will be helping to administer the upcoming online State assessment but couldn’t attend one of the Department’s recent regional workshops can now see the entire training online.

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