Commissioner’s Update – February 6, 2014

From the Maine DOE

Maine’s students are our future, and it is teachers who prepare them with the skills they’ll need to achieve success.

Each year, the Maine DOE Teacher of the Year program gives us an important opportunity to come together as a state to say ‘thank you’ to our most deserving classroom leaders – like current Teacher of the Year Karen MacDonald, an English language arts teacher at Portland’s King Middle School who is ensuring education is the great equalizer for her students, many who are new to our great country.

While Mrs. MacDonald is just beginning her 2014 Teacher of the Year journey that will bring her to communities across Maine, the White House and even NASA Space Camp, we are already seeking nominations for the 2015 honoree.

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News & Views

Governor LePage, Maine DOE and schools recognize Digital Learning Day

AUGUSTA – Governor Paul R. LePage proclaimed Wednesday, Feb. 5 as Digital Learning Day throughout Maine and his Administration was joined by the state’s students and schools in recognizing the important opportunities digital learning provides. | More

Charter Commission advances 3 applications, holds public hearings

Last week, the Maine Charter School Commission voted to advance applications from Lewiston-Auburn Academy Charter School, Lewiston; Maine Connections Academy; and Maine Virtual Academy. The application for Many Hands Montessori School in Windham did not move forward. | More

Maine DOE seeks summer food site sponsors

AUGUSTA – The Maine Department of Education is seeking organizations to help provide low-income children healthy meals when school is not in session this summer. | More

Maine DOE shares educator effectiveness approved models

To support school administrative units (SAUs) in continuing with work already underway when the rule was originally proposed in 2013 as well as SAUs who are just beginning to explore professional practice models, the Department has posted and will update as needed the Maine DOE Menu of Approved Professional Practice Models along with information about the requirements for a model on its Educator Effectiveness website. | More

Self-assessment for proficiency-based diploma transition online through June

Fostering candid self-evaluation, the self-assessment tool provided by Maine DOE leads districts through a comprehensive set of questions focused on policy, practice and community engagement aspects of implementation. | More

Requirement for transportation inclusion in IEP

Our Special Services team members are often asked under what circumstances and in what way does transportation appear in a student’s Individualized Education Program (IEP). | More

Jay Ketner joins Maine DOE as World Languages Specialist

Dr. Jay Ketner has joined the Maine DOE as its World Languages Specialist. In his new role, Ketner will support districts in their implementation of best practices in world languages education and serve as the regional representative for Cumberland County. | More

Judges sought for April 12 History Day competition

Judges are being sought for the 2014 Maine National History Day competition, to be held at UMaine in Orono, on Saturday, April 12. | More

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