Welcome to the October issue of the Maine DOE Monthly.
Under the leadership of new Acting Commissioner Jim Rier, we’ve made incredible progress this month in moving forward several of the Department’s key initiatives that will ultimately improve student outcomes. We released $2 million in funding and extensive online resources to help districts transition to the proficiency-based diploma, hired our first Educator Effectiveness Coordinator who will support Maine schools in ensuring there is a great teacher in every classroom and refocused superintendent transfer decisions on the best interests of our students.
We also furthered our efforts to improve our Department’s service to you by launching a new autism resource and research institute in partnership with UMaine and a newly-redesigned www.maine.gov/doe. And, we’ve continued to celebrate the success stories in our schools, including announcing Maine’s finalists for the prestigious Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching and the state’s improved SAT results that show an increasing percentage of high school students who are proficient in math and reading.
As you can see, a lot happens here in just a few weeks, so please stay tuned to our Newsroom throughout the month for the latest Maine DOE updates.
Dispatches & Press Releases
Maine students show improved proficiency in math, reading
AUGUSTA – Proficiency in math and reading is on the rise again in Maine high schools according to the scores just in from last May’s SAT, suggesting students are better prepared for success in college and their careers. | More | Math and reading proficiency rates rise, work continues
Governor LePage appoints Acting Education Commissioner
AUGUSTA – Governor Paul R. LePage has appointed Jim Rier as Acting Commissioner of the Maine Department of Education, effective immediately. Rier, a native of Machias who now lives in Topsham, has been at Maine DOE for a decade, first as Director of Finance and Operations and most recently as Deputy Commissioner since 2011. | More | New Commissioner, same commitment to supporting schools
Transfer decisions refocused on student best interest
AUGUSTA – Superintendents who reject a parent’s request to send their child to school in another district will now have to explain why that transfer would not be in the best interest of the student. | More
Successful transition to proficiency-based diploma starts now
In the spring of 2018, the students now in eighth grade will become the state’s first class to graduate having demonstrated their mastery of all State standards in the eight content areas of the Maine Learning Results. | More
Maine DOE names educator effectiveness coordinator
Mary Paine, a former English teacher, has been named the new educator effectiveness coordinator for the Maine DOE. | More
DOE, UMaine launch autism resource, research institute
AUGUSTA – Mainers who serve children with autism and their families will soon have a statewide system of supports. The Maine Autism Institute for Education and Research, a partnership of the Maine Department of Education and the University of Maine’s College of Education and Human Development, will open on Jan. 1 at the UMaine campus. | More
Mainers finalists for top teaching award in math, science
GARDINER – Department of Education Chief Academic Officer Rachelle Tome announced that four of Maine’s top teachers are finalists for the nation’s highest honor for mathematics and science educators. | More
Maine DOE launches redesigned homepage
The Maine DOE recently unveiled its newly redesigned homepage. We liked our old homepage, but we are constantly looking to improve the experience people have when they interact with our Department and for so many, our website makes that important first impression. | More
New toolkit measures alignment of materials to standards
Trying to determine whether a lesson plan, textbook or other item aligns with Maine’s updated math and English language arts standards? A free comprehensive toolkit for evaluating alignment to the Expectation of those standards is now available. | More
Educators help develop formative assessment digital library
This summer, 71 Maine educators began helping to develop a formative assessment digital library to accompany Maine’s new assessments, which will be administered starting in the spring of 2015. | More
Research project seeks opinions on education and technology issues
The Maine DOE has partnered with Project Tomorrow to preregister all Maine schools for Speak Up 2013, a national research project that collects views and opinions of K-12 students, parents and educators on critical 21st century education and technology issues. | More