Commissioner’s Update – September 13, 2012

Commissioner's Update - September 13, 2012
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This week we’ve been going non-stop at the Maine DOE.

In the past seven days, we have submitted our request for ESEA flexibility, named one all-star educator Maine’s 2013 Teacher of the Year, and launched our new statewide literacy plan.

It was incredible to surprise special education teacher Shannon Shanning with the Teacher of the Year award Monday at her school in Poland. While many people praised Shannon at the ceremony, perhaps one of her students described her best: “Mrs. Shanning is confident that we can do anything, which makes us confident that we can do anything. We think she is the best teacher in the world.” Having the “best teacher in the world” right here in Maine makes me feel good about the work our educators are doing every day.

When we unveiled Literacy for ME in Lewiston, we stressed the necessity of community involvement in order to improve literacy levels across the state. Communities should try to send a local team, or even just a few educators, to one of our six regional kick-off meetings in the coming weeks. We want to help you begin the process of comprehensive literacy planning so that we can all work to ensure Maine citizens from birth through adulthood are literate and prepared for the workforce.

— Stephen Bowen



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NEWS & VIEWS

Communities asked to create local literacy plansSixth grade student Yousif Ahmed spoke about his path to English literacy, which included tutoring other kids, after moving to Maine from Yemen.

LEWISTON – Literacy is not just reading and it’s not just the responsibility of schools. Education Commissioner Stephen Bowen, educators, business people and others joined together Tuesday at the Lewiston Public Library to launch a statewide effort aimed at assisting communities to build local plans for helping their kids, adults, immigrants and others achieve higher levels of literacy and be prepared for success as adults. | More | Commissioner Stephen Bowen’s remarks at Literacy for ME launch in Lewiston

Poland teacher named 2013 Teacher of the Year

POLAND – Shannon Shanning, a seventh- and eighth-grade special education teacher at Whittier Middle School, was named the 2013 Maine Teacher of the Year in front of students, colleagues, family and other distinguished guests Monday. | More

High School firefighting training program expands to BrunswickEight Lisbon students prepare for the Firefighting I and II State Test.

Maine Region Ten Technical High School in Brunswick has recently expanded its firefighting program to include Emergency Medical Technician training. | More

Two Maine schools receive national recognition

AUGUSTA – Hope Elementary School and Solon Elementary School were among those recognized this month as U.S. Department of Education’s 2012 National Blue Ribbon Schools by U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. | More

Request for ESEA flexibility formally submitted to feds

AUGUSTA – The Maine Department of Education formally submitted a request for flexibility under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (or No Child Left Behind Act) to the federal government last week. | More

Maine Bus Driver of Year named Annesa Chambers, Bus Driver of the Year

The Maine Association for Pupil Transportation announced Annesa Chambers as Bus Driver of the Year. | More

Veterans will benefit from WorkReady workforce training program

VIDEO: A WorkReady program customized for veterans will be piloted in the Casco/Naples area beginning in October. | More

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