Maine Department of Education

The Maine Department of Education provides leadership and support to educators and families in preparing all Maine students for success in college, careers and civic life.

The Maine DOE Newsroom highlights the work of Maine schools and the Department of Education.

PRIORITY NOTICE: Moving Toward Understanding: Fostering an Intercultural Learning Environment

A workshop series by Maine Intercultural Communication Consultants (MICC).

“MICC is a women-owned business based in Portland, Maine, with years of experience helping schools, organizations, and individuals develop interculturally and navigate differences effectively. Passionate and engaging facilitators, we ground our interactive and experiential trainings in best practices of adult learning, and build on the strengths you already have. We have lived across the globe, and our work reflects that dexterity, curiosity, and humility.”


Thursday, March 18, 7:00-8:30 PM
Thursday, March 25, 7:00-8:00PM

Presented from both the perspective of a Muslim immigrant in Maine and a non-Muslim Mainer who lived in a Muslim majority country, this training seeks to dispel myths and misunderstandings by asking the questions: What is Islam and what is it NOT?

This training will:

  • Provide a brief history and context of the religion
  • Include discussion of Islam’s similarities to Christianity and Judaism
  • Define important terms
  • Give participants insight to more effectively reach, serve, educate, and connect with Muslim people

Presented by Reza Jalali and Liz Greason


Thursday, April 1, 7:00-8:30 PM
Thursday, April 8, 7:00-8:00 PM

As educators, what don’t we know we don’t know? Exploring this question can be a gateway into understanding and interrupting microaggressions.

This training will:

  • Define microaggression
  • Differentiate between different types of microaggressions
  • Identify the impact microaggressions have on marginalized student groups
  • Discuss what we, as educators, can do to minimize the impact of microaggressions in the classroom and schools settings

Presented by Deb Breiting and Liz Greason

Register here:

About the Presenters:

Liz Greason
Liz Greason

Deb Breiting is co-founder of Maine Intercultural Communication Consultants and hails from Vancouver, Canada. Born in Montreal to immigrant parents from Germany and Japan, Deb grew up in a multilingual and multicultural home and is a first generation university graduate. She has a degree in Linguistics and German from the University of British Columbia (UBC) and is a graduate of the UBC Certificate Program in Intercultural Studies. With a professional focus on teaching English as a Second Language, Deb most recently taught at Portland Adult Education for the New Mainers Resource Center and coordinated projects designed to further support the integration of immigrants with professional backgrounds into Maine’s workforce. In addition, Deb has lived in Toronto, Munich, and Tokyo where she has worked for schools and non-profit organizations. Deb is an IDI Qualified Administrator and is currently enrolled in the Master’s program of Adult and Higher Education at University of Southern Maine.

Liz Greason
Liz Greason

A Mainer by birth, Liz Greason is co-founder of Maine Intercultural Communication Consultants. She lived in the Middle East for many years, where she taught students from around the world at the American University in Dubai, with a focus on effective cross-cultural communication. Since returning to the United States, Liz has applied her knowledge of the Middle East and Islam, intercultural competency, and intercultural communication to help Mainers effectively recruit and retain a diverse workforce and serve diverse populations equitably. Liz has also served on the faculty of the University of Southern Maine (USM) and Portland Adult Education. Growing up in Bridgton, Liz graduated from, and later taught at, Lake Region High School.

Liz holds degrees in Women and Gender Studies, with focus areas of intersectional feminism, from Mount Holyoke College and Reed College. She is a Qualified Administrator of the Intercultural Development Inventory.

Reza Jalali
Reza Jalali

Reza Jalali is a noted writer, educator, immigrant advocate and former refugee from Iran. He was recently appointed Executive Director of the Greater Portland Immigrant WELCOME Center, a non-profit organization that serves as a hub for organizations and individuals to collaborate in helping Maine’s thriving immigrant community reach its civic, economic, and social potential. Additionally a prolific author of the immigrant experience, Reza’s forthcoming book Dear Maine: The Trials and Triumphs of Maine’s 21st Century Immigrants will be available in August 2021. Jalali’s other books include New Mainers, Moon Watchers, Homesick Mosque and Other Stories, and The Poets and the Assassin. His children’s book, Moon Watchers, has received the Stepping Stone Multicultural Award. His five-act play, The Poets and the Assassin, which is about women in Iran and Islam, has been staged to rave reviews across New England. Jalali’s storytelling was also featured on National Public Radio’s popular program, The Moth Radio Hour.

Additional information:

This workshop series will require participants to maintain a reflection journal. Participants should come motivated to create change and should be prepared to participate in group discussions based on readings and resources shared prior to the session.

Engaging in this cohort provides an opportunity for participants to earn credit hours. To receive credit, participants must attend all four sessions.

For more information contact Danielle Despins; a volunteer member of Maine DOE’s internal Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) sub-committee at (207) 592 -1448.

MTSS Professional Development Opportunity: Four-Step Problem Solving in Tier 1

Time is short and needs are high.  As we rapidly progress through the second half of the 20-21 school year, many educators begin to ask, “Have I gotten enough done? Are my kids ready for the next grade? How will I ever meet the needs of those I notice struggling with the time I have left?”

Beginning March 3rd, a new 6-week MicroPD series will focus on strategies for strengthening tier 1 supports for all students by exploring a 4-step problem solving process as it is applied at the tier 1 level.  The goal of the series is to develop both understanding and application strategies for improving supports for all students through tier 1 instruction.  Participation in this MicroPD series will prepare administrators, interventionists, and other support staff/teams with skills to evaluate the tier 1 setting in their school, application of a four step problem solving process for addressing areas of need, and action planning for initiating the process to better support teachers and students as they round out the school year.

Session dates and topics:

  • Session 1: March 3:   Exploring effective four step problem solving models
  • Session 2: March 10: Goal/Problem Identification
  • Session 3: March 17: Problem Analysis
  • Session 4: March 24: Instructional/Intervention Design
  • Session 5: March 31: Response to Instruction/Intervention
  • Session 6: April 7: Implications for leaders/action planning

Sessions will be held on Wednesdays from 1:00-2:00 PM for 6 weeks.  Participants will receive a PD companion guide that they can use to facilitate their learning throughout the series.  Can’t attend all of the sessions?  That’s ok!  Sessions will be recorded and registered participants will be able to view the recording and use the companion guide to catch up and stay on track with the series.

You MUST register for this new PD series even if you have registered for MTSS MicroPD in the past.  Registration for this PD will close on Tuesday, March 2nd and registered participants will receive the workbook prior to the start of the MicroPD on March 3rd.

Click here to register for this 6-week series:

For more information or if you have questions, please contact

Education Innovators Panel: Equity in Education March 4th at 3pm

The below opportunity is hosted by Educate Maine, the Education Action Forum of Maine, Thomas College’s Center for Innovation in Education, and the Maine State Chamber of Commerce Education Foundation.

Education Innovators: Equity in Education
March 4th from 3pm to 4pm

Attendees will hear from district, teacher, and nonprofit leaders about promising practices used to close opportunity gaps. Attendees will hear about equity initiatives implemented across school districts, examine classroom-based practices, and learn about building community support for equity priorities.

The speakers are: 

  • Dr. Marsha Drake, Chief Equity Officer, Hamilton County Schools, Tennessee
  • Cindy Soule, Teacher, Gerald A. Talbot School, 2021 Maine State Teacher of the Year
  • Brittany Ray, Executive Director, Trauma-Responsive Equitable Education

This event is free for attendees. Interested participants can register here: 

See the attached flyer for more details.

This event is part of the Education Innovators Series supported by Educate Maine, the Education Action Forum of Maine, Thomas College’s Center for Innovation in Education, and the Maine State Chamber of Commerce Education Foundation

Bangor High School Students Record Themselves Reading Aloud for Elementary School Remote Learners

Bangor High School Student Council members recorded a selection of the 2020-2021 nominee picture books for the annual Chickadee Awards. This project was completed for Bangor elementary children learning remotely so that they might hear and enjoy the read aloud books from home.

Learn more about the project and see the recorded readings here

Thank you to the Bangor High School students for sharing the love of reading with younger students!

Information for this article was provided by the Bangor School Department as part of the Maine Schools Sharing Success Campaign. To submit a story or an idea, email it to Rachel at


Priority Notice: Maine Learning Results Review Writing Teams Now Accepting Applications

The Maine Department of Education is performing a regularly scheduled review of the Maine Learning Results for the following areas: Health Education and Physical Education, Visual and Performing Arts, and World Languages. The Department is looking for participants to serve as part of the writing teams this summer. The purpose of the writing teams is to revise the current standards, based on guidance provided from content area steering committees. For more information about the standards review process, check the new Maine DOE standards revision website.

Teams will serve as representative samples of educators in each of the content areas who are actively working across locations throughout Maine that cover PreK-12 grade levels. It is our hope to have participation from all Maine counties, ensuring geographic diversity.

Most of the work will take place in June, July, and August. Drawing from prior experience, most content area writing teams took approximately three days or 21 hours to complete the work. All summer meetings will be held virtually in two- to four-hour blocks of time. Specific schedules will be determined by the content area specialists with input from writing team members.

All interested educators are strongly encouraged to participate. All participants will receive contact hours for their participation.

If you are interested and committed to participating in this important work, please complete this short application by Friday, March 26, 2021 to be considered. Department content area specialists will reach out to interested participants with more information in the coming weeks.

For more information or questions contact the applicable Maine DOE Content Specialist: