Message from Kellie D. Bailey SEL Specialist Maine DOE

Rock with a leaf on it
This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-ND

Dear Maine Educators-

It has been such a pleasure to collaborate with you over the past few months. You are Educational Warriors. Your passion, strength, ingenuity and resilience overwhelms me. I’m beyond grateful to work for Commissioner Makin who clearly supports and honors the emotional wellbeing of our Maine educators and support staffs. When I accepted this position as the first SEL specialist for the Maine DOE in January 2020, I could never have foreseen that in just 10 short weeks, Maine educators would be faced with such sadness, grief and concern for their students and the world.

Our morning mindful practices and the work that hundreds of you have put in over the past three months to learn and grow in all things social/emotional is greatly appreciated. For many of you the school year is over, but the work has not stopped. Preparations for school re-entry and how this will look is on everyone’s mind. Please remember to take small moments to be present in your life. Listen to the birds, feel the sun warm your face, smell the freshly cut grass and BREATHE ON PURPOSE.

Breathing is our first life gift and our birthright. Breathe for yourselves and for one another. Give yourself permission to step outside of the automaticity of an unaware existence and spend a few moments in gratitude and hope. We will get through this together and we will begin the important work of building a new reality in education with a solid foundation of love, compassion, equity and understanding.  Our children deserve for us to be at our emotional and physical best so we can continue the work of teaching courageously and compassionately and growing good humans.

Be Well, Safe, Healthy and Happy-

With Love- Kellie