Last summer, the Department received approval for an accountability waiver under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA). This waiver provides flexibility in meeting federal accountability requirements by allowing Maine to implement its own tiered statewide system of support.
By reviewing annual progress and student proficiency, schools are placed in one of five categories: priority, focus, monitor, progressing and meeting, allowing us to most intensively target support to the schools that need it most.
In the months since, the Department’s team of Title I school improvement consultants have been working closely with the 19 priority and 35 focus schools that were identified, assisting them with a comprehensive review of needs and with developing improvement plans.
Just as Maine’s system allows our Department to identify schools that most need improvement support, it also recognizes those showing the greatest levels of improvement and performance. Through this process, we are pleased to announce that 19 schools have been named as a High Progress Reward School and 20 as a High Performance Reward School (see the list of distinguished schools below).
These 39 schools have consistently demonstrated high progress or achieved great performance toward meeting State and federal accountability standards for English language arts and mathematics. Schools identified as High Progress Reward Schools are among the highest 15 percent of Title I schools with the greatest levels of progress over three years while High Performance Reward Schools have met all annual targets and are also performing within the highest 15 percent of Title I schools.
This month, I’ll be sending these schools letters of congratulations and certificates of achievement, and in addition to that acknowledgement, our Department intends to invite them over the coming year to share their strategies and innovative practices that are resulting in high achievement for students. With enrollments ranging from 31 to 573 students and the majority of reward schools having a poverty rate of 50 percent or higher, we believe these schools have best practices to share for supporting disadvantaged learners. Representatives from Reward schools will also be invited to participate in various advisory groups and will be invited to provide training sessions at statewide conferences and regional workshops.
On behalf of the entire Department, I want to congratulate these schools and encourage their entire school communities to take great pride in their accomplishments. As we continue to raise expectations for all Maine students, these schools provide an example of the excellence that results where there is a shared commitment to effective, learner-centered instruction; great teachers and leaders; and multiple pathways for learner achievement.
I also want to thank the staff at these schools for believing in all of their students and putting the place the supports kids need to succeed. Keep up the great work!
High Progress Reward Schools
Alexander Public Schools Alexander Elementary
RSU 54/MSAD 54 Bloomfield Elementary School
RSU 25 Bucksport Middle School
RSU 87/MSAD 23 Carmel Elementary School
RSU 12 Chelsea Elementary School
Caswell Public Schools Dawn F Barnes Elementary School
MSAD 27 Eagle Lake Elem/Jr High School
Scarborough Public Schools Eight Corners Elementary School
RSU 20 Gladys Weymouth Elem School
RSU 23 Governor John Fairfield School
Jonesport Public Schools Jonesport Elementary School
RSU 64/MSAD 64 Kenduskeag Elementary School
RSU 11/MSAD 11 Laura E Richards School
RSU 25 Miles Lane School
Princeton Public Schools Princeton Elementary School
RSU 68/MSAD 68 Se Do Mo Cha Middle School
RSU 55/MSAD 55 South Hiram Elementary School
RSU 61/MSAD 61 Stevens Brook School
MSAD 27 Wallagrass Elementary School
High Performance Reward Schools
Beals Public Schools Beals Elementary School
Otis Public Schools Beech Hill School
Blue Hill Public Schools Blue Hill Consolidated School
RSU 54/MSAD 54 Canaan Elementary School
York Public Schools Coastal Ridge Elementary
Bar Harbor Public Schools Conners-Emerson School
RSU 37/MSAD 37 Daniel W Merritt School
RSU 37/MSAD 37 Harrington Elementary School
Jefferson Public Schools Jefferson Village School
RSU 20 Kermit S Nickerson School
Augusta Public Schools Lillian Parks Hussey School
RSU 16 Minot Consolidated School
Nobleboro Public Schools Nobleboro Central School
RSU 24 Peninsula School
RSU 58/MSAD 58 Phillips Elementary School
RSU 11/MSAD 11 Pittston Consolidated School
Cape Elizabeth Public Schools Pond Cove Elementary
Portland Public Schools Presumpscot School
Whiting Public Schools Whiting Village School
Winthrop Public Schools Winthrop Grade School