PRIORITY NOTICE: Proposed changes for Certification and PEPG Rules; Hearings on Dec. 27

As part of the Maine Department of Education’s efforts to streamline certification processes for Maine educators; align certification rules with current statute; and ensure that new and conditionally certified teachers have access to high quality peer support, the Department is proposing revisions to Rule Chapter 180: Performance Evaluation and Professional Growth Systems, revisions Rule Chapter 115: Certification Authorization and Approval of Educational Personnel; and repeal of Chapter 118: Purposes, Standards and Procedures for Educational Personnel Support Systems.

Find the details for proposed changes for Rule Chapters 115, 118, and 180 on the Maine DOE Website. Provided below are hearing dates, details about the comment period and highlights about the proposed changes.

Hearing for Rule Chapters 115 and 118:
December 27, 2017 from 12:00 – 2:00 PM.
Room 103 A and B in the Cross State Office Building, 111 Sewall Street, Augusta, Maine
Comment periods:
Chapter 115 Proposed Section 14: November 17, 2017 – December 18, 2017
Full revisions for Chapter 115 and Rule Chapter 118: December 6, 2017 – January 18, 2018

Hearing for Rule Chapter 180:
December 27, 2017 from 2:00 – 3:00 PM.
Room 103 A and B in the Cross State Office Building, 111 Sewall Street, Augusta, Maine
Comment period:
Rule Chapter 180: December 6, 2017 – January 18, 2018.

Comments can be submitted to Jaci Holmes at


Chapter 180
Some of the more significant changes are contained in a new Section (11): Peer Support and Feedback, and accomplish the following:

  1. Retain a peer level of peer support and feedback for all teachers and principals.
  2. Establish a mentor/coach component for all newly hired and conditionally certified teachers.
  3. Differentiate peer support requirements to provide greater support for new and conditionally certified teachers.
  4. Provide greater, more structured support for conditionally certified special education teachers.
  5. Provide the SAU with flexibility in establishing mentor and coach qualifications as well as assigning mentors and coaches to better target educator needs.
  6. Sharpen the line between peer support components and evaluation components

Chapter 115
The Department has updated the rules consistent with recent statutory changes and removed redundancy and unnecessary language. The format is being refined to be clear and concise. In brief, the following are some of the more significant changes:

  • Consolidates the number of credentials available to three: a clearance, a certificate, and a conditional certificate.
  • Eliminates Rule Chapter 118: Education Personnel Support System. Rather than having two different support systems under two different rules, there will just be one under Rule Chapter 180. Also, some aspects of Rule Chapter 118 will be merged into Rule Chapter 115.
  • Creates a pathway to become a teacher based on work experience. A person will be able to use work experience to address knowledge areas that are required for an endorsement.
  • Refines and reformats the rule to be more logical and sequential. There has been confusion about sections of the rule and this should help to make it more clear and efficient.
  • Part I will be repealed and replaced, Part II will be revised in legislative format

Chapter 115 (Regarding Administrative Hold)
This rule creates a category within Section 14 of Chapter 115, Part I for Administrative Hold. The agency proposed rule would require all credential holders to provide the Department with an address at which the Department may contact them with respect to their credential. An administrative hold will be used in cases where information about certified individuals comes to the attention of the Department and the Department contacts the credential holder at the address on file and receives no response.  In those situations, the Department will place the credential on administrative hold until such time as the holder responds. Emergency Rulemaking for Chapter 115 (Regarding Administrative Hold) went into effect November 20, 2017.