Earlier this week, a 24-person panel came together in Augusta to begin reviewing the state’s math and English language arts standards.
The panel’s membership – which includes parents, teachers, principals, superintendents, school board members, college professors and business leaders – is diverse, as are their perspectives. Over the next six weeks, they’ll assess the rigor and clarity of each standard and make suggestions where improvement is needed.
I personally asked them to participate in this critical process because learning standards underlie much of our work in the coming years to transform education in Maine, from the awarding of proficiency-based diplomas to the implementation of educator evaluations and next generation assessment systems. If changes are needed, the time to make them is now. Continue reading
The following Priority Notice was sent to Maine Superintendents and Directors of Special Education by Commissioner Jim Rier and Maine DOE Director of Special Services on Sept. 17.
Dear Superintendents and Directors of Special Education,
As Maine moves towards a proficiency-based system that will ensure that all students graduate from our high schools having met rigorous learning standards, some have asked about the impact of this new expectation on students with disabilities. Continue reading
Posted in Administrative Letters, Administrators, Educators, Elementary School, From the Commissioner, High School, Middle School, News & Views, Proficiency-Based Diploma, Special Populations, Students and Families
Following the horrific attacks of Sept. 11 now 13 years ago, many Mainers stepped up to serve our country and the cause of freedom around the world. Their children are unsung heroes who face frequent moves, the absence of a beloved mom and/or dad during long deployments and daily uncertainty.
Congratulations on the start of the 2014-15 school year!
This week, Maine students are fortunate to be heading back to schools where they will be welcomed by educators who encourage their love of learning and are deeply dedicated to ensuring every one of them is successful.
On behalf of Governor LePage and all of us at the Department, I want to thank those teachers, administrators and other school staff for their care for and commitment to our students. Maine kids are increasingly being inspired in their classrooms and achievement in their studies is rising as a result, putting them on a path for future college and career success.
Posted in Accountability, Administrators, Adult Education, Assessment, Early Childhood, Educator Effectiveness, Educators, Elementary School, From the Commissioner, High School, Higher Ed, Instruction, Middle School, Operations, Professional Development, Proficiency-Based Diploma, School Improvement, Standards, Students and Families
The following Priority Notice was distributed to superintendents on Tuesday, August 19.
Ensuring the safety of our students is a commitment we all share and by providing supportive places to learn and thrive, we are doing our part to help our young people reach their full potential.
That is why today, I am pleased to announce the release of an online training video and toolkit, Suicide Prevention Awareness for Maine School Personnel, prepared by the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Maine and available at no cost to Maine schools. This important resource aids school districts in complying with Maine’s school-based suicide awareness and prevention law (LD 609, PL 53, DOE Rule Chapter 38) that was passed in April 2013.
Posted in Administrative Letters, Administrators, Educators, Elementary School, From the Commissioner, Health and Safety, High School, Instruction, Legislation, Middle School, Operations, Professional Development, Special Populations, Students and Families