Category Archives: Assessment

Commissioner’s Update – February 26, 2015

From the Maine Department of Education

Earlier this week, the Department reached out to Maine educators to detail our efforts to better support the continued quality and manageable 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.

To reiterate, as part of our ongoing efforts to support meaningful implementation of new systems that improve the college and career readiness of Maine students, the Department is committed to:

  • Providing $4 million to support districts with proficiency-based diploma transition costs
  • Increasing training and assistance to ensure success of new online assessment
  • Not issuing A-F school report cards in 2015 but resuming doing so in 2016
  • Keeping the field apprised of legislation that could extend PEPG system pilots another year
  • Providing $5 million for professional development to support local evaluation system development

The Department hopes this increased funding and flexibility helps to alleviate anxiety in the field so educators can focus on what is most important: helping all Maine students reach their full potential.

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Notices and Reporting

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News & Views

Acting Education Commissioner to visit Baxter Academy Friday

Maine’s Acting Education Commissioner Tom Desjardin will visit the Baxter Academy for Technology & Science on Friday to see how the innovative new public school is engaging its students through hands-on group learning. The visit marks the first time a sitting education commissioner has toured a Maine public charter school. | More

Maine DOE reminds schools of roof snow load hazard

The Maine DOE is reminding districts that the heavy snowfall this winter may be straining school roofs. | More

MEA Science Alternate (PAAP) registration ends March 1

Registration for this year’s Personalized Alternate Assessment Portfolio (PAAP) closes this Sunday, March 1 at 5 p.m.  | More

Registration underway for alternate assessment for math, ELA

Registrations are currently being collected from special educations directors by the Maine DOE for the National Center and State Collaborative Alternate Assessment (NCSC) that will be used to assess mathematics and English language arts. | More

Maine DOE seeks Visual and Performing Arts Specialist

The Maine DOE is seeking applicants to fill the position of Visual and Performing Arts Specialist. | More

Department offers special services related guidance

The Maine DOE’s Office of Special Services is reminding all contracted service providers who provide services to children that they must undergo a Criminal History Record Check. This includes transportation providers such as cab drivers. | More

Maine DOE shares guidance related to NCAA student eligibility

The Maine DOE is offering guidance to Maine schools related to the expectations of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) for courses. | More

Comments sought on Maine’s IDEA Part B application

The Maine DOE is seeking comments from the public on its annual application for federal funds under Part B of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), which covers services for preschool- and school-age children with disabilities. | More

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Registration underway for alternate assessment for math, ELA

Registrations are currently being collected from special educations directors by the Maine DOE for the National Center and State Collaborative Alternate Assessment (NCSC) that will be used to assess mathematics and English language arts.

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MEA Science Alternate (PAAP) registration ends March 1

Registration for this year’s Personalized Alternate Assessment Portfolio (PAAP) closes this Sunday, March 1 at 5 p.m.

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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

Commissioner’s Update – February 19, 2015

From the Maine Department of Education

The Maine DOE has released preliminary FY 2016 (2015-16 school year) State subsidy printouts, known as ED 279s, on its website at www.maine.gov/doe/eps/.

These preliminary amounts are based on Governor LePage’s proposed two-year budget that increases funding for Maine schools and students and assumes State payment directly to public charter schools as proposed in LD 235.  Specifically, the Governor’s FY16 budget proposal includes $964.1 million for general purpose aid for Maine schools – an increase of $20.3 million over the $943.8 appropriated by the Legislature for FY 15 – and $966.3 million for FY17 – an increase of $22.5 million over appropriated FY15 funding.

The proposed budget would bring the subsidy provided by the State per pupil to $5,334 in FY16 and $5,389 in FY17, an increase of nearly 17 percent since the Governor took office in 2011 and per pupil State funding was $4,619.

The subsidy amounts for FY 2016 contained in the preliminary ED 279s do not represent final action of the 127th Maine Legislature and should therefore only be used as initial guidance in informing local budget preparations.

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Notices and Reporting

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News & Views

Maine recognizes Career and Technical Education Month

Students and educators across Maine are joining those across the nation during the month of February to celebrate national Career and Technical Education (CTE) Month. | More

MaineCare Seed payment adjustments made, report review by April 1

The remaining 2014-15 subsidy checks for General Purpose Aid for local schools will reflect adjustments for MaineCare Seed payments paid by the Maine DOE on behalf of school administrative units (SAUs).  | More

Maine DOE shares assessment EL support information

The Maine DOE has released new resources relating to supports available for English learners taking the Maine Educational Assessment for Mathematics and English Language Arts/Literacy developed by Smarter Balanced. | More

School enrollment contacts posted to support assessment administration

Contact information has been posted to the Maine DOE website to assist School Test Coordinators (SCs) in resolving any discrepancies in the student lists available in the Test Information Distribution Engine during the upcoming administration of the new Maine Educational Assessment for Mathematics and English Language Arts/Literacy developed by Smarter Balanced. | More

RFP issued for 21st Century Community Learning Centers Program

The Maine DOE has issued a request for proposals seeking bids to establish or extend 21st Century Community Learning Centers (CCLC) in 2015-2016. | More

QZAB Tax Credit Bond applications due April 17

The Maine DOE will accept applications for the Federal Qualified Zone Academy Bond (QZAB) Program through April 17. The Department currently has $1,435,000 of QZAB issuing authority to distribute to qualifying schools units. | More

Maine seeks feedback on IDEA Part C application

Maine is seeking input on its application for the Part C (birth through two) program under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, known as IDEA. The Part C budget is for State Fiscal Year 2016. | More

Maine State Archives commemorates 150th anniversary of 13th Amendment

The Maine State Archives is celebrating Black History Month by commemorating the State’s 150th anniversary of ratifying the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which abolished slavery. | More

More Dispatches | Press Releases | From the Commissioner


LATEST DOE Career/Project Opportunities

Maine DOE shares assessment EL support information

The Maine DOE has released new resources relating to supports available for English learners taking the Maine Educational Assessment for Mathematics and English Language Arts/Literacy developed by Smarter Balanced.

Continue reading

School enrollment contacts posted to support assessment administration

Contact information has been posted to the Maine DOE website to assist School Test Coordinators (SCs) in resolving any discrepancies in the student lists available in the Test Information Distribution Engine (TIDE) during the upcoming administration of the new Maine Educational Assessment for Mathematics and English Language Arts/Literacy developed by Smarter Balanced.

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Commissioner’s Update – February 12, 2015

From the Maine Department of Education

The nomination deadline is just days away for the 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. To be considered, a teacher must hold at least a four-year degree and be employed by a Maine public school – including a public charter school or publicly supported secondary school.

The eventual winner of the state’s highest teaching honor, which is awarded by the Maine DOE through a program administered by Educate Maine, serves as an advocate for teachers, students and the efforts underway in Maine’s public schools to prepare students for success in college, career and civic life.

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Notices and Reporting

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News & Views

Maine DOE recommends, rather than requires, assessment keyboards

The Maine DOE is pleased to announce that mechanical keyboards will no longer be required for the online administration of the new Maine Educational Assessment for Mathematics and English Language Arts/Literacy. | More

Governor LePage proclaims February Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month

Governor Paul R. LePage is requesting Mainers observe Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month this February. | More

JMG receives $200,000 to expand to Cony High School

Governor Paul R. LePage and Acting Education Commissioner Tom Desjardin were on hand Tuesday as Jobs for Maine’s Graduates (JMG) accepted a $200,000 grant from the AT&T Foundation. | More

School day SAT administration support available

The Department is letting schools preparing to administer the optional SAT to their students on Wednesday, April 15 know of support available from College Board. | More

Nominations open for Maine’s 2015 Curriculum Leader of the Year

The Maine Curriculum Leaders’ Association (MCLA) is seeking nominations for the 2015 Maine Curriculum Leader of the Year through March 30. | More

Maine DOE sets reduced AP test fees for low-income students

The Maine DOE has worked with the U.S. Department of Education and the College Board to acquire grant money to cover a portion of the exam fee for low-income students. | More

Department updates guidance on adult ed and MUSER

The Maine DOE has recently revised its FAQs on adult education and its role in Maine’s Unified Special Education Regulations (MUSER). | More

Students encouraged to enter Maine Constitution Essay and Poster Contest

The Maine Secretary of State’s Office is inviting students to enter its Maine Constitution Essay and Poster Contest. | More

Maine schools educating boys of color eligible for $10k COSEBOC award

Qualifying Maine schools are invited to enter the Coalition of Schools Educating Boys of Color (COSEBOC) fourth annual COSEBOC School Awards. | More

Webinar on Feb. 24 on nuisance birds around schools

Maine schools that have issues with nuisance birds are invited to a free webinar overviewing the challenges that avian pests present and ways to deter them. | More

More Dispatches | Press Releases | From the Commissioner


LATEST DOE Career/Project Opportunities

Maine DOE sets reduced AP test fees for low-income students

The Maine DOE has worked with the U.S. Department of Education and the College Board to acquire grant money to cover a portion of the exam fee for low-income students who are enrolled in an Advanced Placement course.

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Nominations open for Maine’s 2015 Curriculum Leader of the Year

The Maine Curriculum Leaders’ Association (MCLA) is seeking nominations for the 2015 Maine Curriculum Leader of the Year through March 30.

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