Category Archives: Press Releases

Press releases from before January 1, 2010, are in the archive.

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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Nominations sought for 2016 Maine Teacher of the Year

AUGUSTA – Nominations are now open 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. Continue reading

Tom Desjardin named Acting Education Commissioner

Tom Desjardin has been appointed by Governor Paul R. LePage as Acting Education Commissioner. Continue reading

Maine joins New England states to create common system for reporting on educational performance

PORTLAND – A consortium of states including Maine has released two years of reports created under a first of its kind regional common data project.

Beginning in 2009, the five state education agencies participating in the New England Secondary School Consortium (NESSC) —Maine, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont—have been collecting, calculating and reporting high school graduation rates, high school dropout rates, and postsecondary enrollment, persistence and completion rates using a common set of procedures and methodologies developed by a regional team of data specialists from each of the five state agencies. This week, the consortium is releasing the first two annual reports on public school performance for the 2011–2012 and 2012–2013 school years. Continue reading

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

Maine high school students show improvements in math, writing and science scores

Performance of third-year high school students increased slightly in math, writing and science, but most students still aren’t achieving grade-level expectations yet are still being allowed to graduate

AUGUSTA – Maine high school juniors improved their scores in math, writing and science on last spring’s statewide standardized tests, but less than half of students are performing at grade level and many will still graduate anyway.  Continue reading

Charter Commission approves Maine Virtual Academy

AUGUSTA – The Maine Charter School Commission has voted to enter into contract negotiations with the backers of what will be the state’s second virtual public charter school. Continue reading

Governor LePage and First Lady to host 4th Annual Blaine House Food Drive

AUGUSTA – The First Family invites the public to visit the Blaine House once again this year in an effort to help fellow Mainers who are less fortunate. Since Governor Paul R. LePage and First Lady Ann M. LePage began the food drive in 2011, they have collected thousands of pounds of food for pantries and shelters across Maine. Continue reading

Charter Commission advances virtual school proposal, schedules public hearing

A public virtual charter school opened earlier this year is serving nearly 300 students from 86 school districts and an application for another online charter hoping to open next year has now moved forward

AUGUSTA – A second public virtual charter school being proposed in Maine was unanimously advanced to the next round of review by the state’s Charter Commission today.

At a meeting this morning in Augusta, Maine Charter School Commission  members working in small review teams presented their recommendations on three applications, with the Commission then voting to advance the application for the online Maine Virtual Academy. Meanwhile, the Commission unanimously agreed applications for Acadia Academy, proposed for Lewiston-Auburn, and Inspire ME Academy, proposed for the Sanford area, should not move forward. Continue reading

Education Commissioner to visit Bangor schools Thursday

Commissioner Jim Rier will see how the high achieving district is working toward graduating students with proficiency-based diplomas starting in 2019

BANGOR – Maine’s Education Commissioner will spend Thursday in the classrooms of the state’s third largest school district to see how proficiency-based education is transforming teaching and learning there.

Commissioner Jim Rier will be in Bangor to tour Vine Street School (preK-3), William S. Cohen School (grades 6-8) and Bangor High School with Bangor School Department Superintendent Betsy Webb.

Bangor schools are among the state’s highest achieving and proficiency levels are well above the state average at the middle and high schools that Governor Paul R. LePage’s Education Commissioner will visit. Both schools earned a B on the report cards released by the Maine Department of Education last spring.   Continue reading