Maine DOE Update – December 04, 2020

From the Maine Department of Education

Reporting Items

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News & Updates

Mills Administration Updates COVID-19 School Health Advisory System

The Mills Administration today released an update to its color-coded Health Advisory System that classifies counties’ relative risk of COVID-19 transmission by color and is provided to assist schools as they continue with their plans to deliver instruction and support students safely this fall. The Maine Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention (Maine CDC) assessed the data and trends for all counties.  Based on this assessment, Oxford County is now categorized as yellow, joining Androscoggin, Somerset and York counties, which were designated previously. Franklin and Washington Counties are now designated as green, along with all other counties. | More

Priority Notice: Input Sought for Teacher Shortage Areas

As part of a federal requirement, the Maine Department of Education submits to the U.S. Department of Education teacher shortage areas for designation, based on collected data and public input.  The U.S. DOE annually designates teacher shortage areas for purposes of deferment of loan repayments or reductions of teaching obligation. | More

Maine Department of Education Announces New Team to Support Contact Tracing in Schools

The Career and Technical Education (CTE) Team recently released information regarding Pilot C for implementing Middle School CTE programs. Middle School CTE provides an opportunity for Maine middle school students to experience hands on learning, workplace skills, and career exploration. CTE empowers students to explore interests and discover activities that are inspiring, experience potential career pathways, and gives them an awareness of the many options that are available. | More

Middle School Career and Technical Education: New Grant Information and Resources

The Maine Department of Education (DOE) today announced the finalists for the recently enacted, national Recognizing Inspirational School Employees (RISE) Award. This new award, passed by the United States Congress in 2019 and overseen by the U.S. Department of Education, honors classified school employees who provide exemplary service. | More

Computer Science Education Week Starts Dec. 7th

Monday Dec. 7th kicks off the start of Computer Science Education Week, 2020! Join the computer science community in celebrating computer science in education. Whether you’re new to the world of computer science or have been involved since its inception, you’ll find many interesting events and activities that are ongoing throughout the week. | More

Maine DOE Farm to School Cook-off Takes on New Format

The Maine Department of Education, Child Nutrition team is holding its annual Farm to School Cook-off in SY 2021 as usual, except this year it will look a bit differently. The cook-off is a statewide culinary competition for teams of school nutrition professionals and students to promote local foods in school meals. This voluntary competition is made available to all school districts in the state. | More

Student Learning Opportunity: Thomas Cup Competition for High School Students

It has been a tough year for many students and Thomas College (and partnering sponsors) want to help by providing a fun and engaging opportunity for students that can be done from the safety of their own homes. The 6th Annual Thomas Cup will include several chances to participate from December 7th, 2020 through January 30th, 2021. It will feature five (5) FREE virtual competitions where students will engage in coding, innovation, esports, robotics, crime scene investigation, and cyber defense. | More

MEDIA RELEASE: RSU 38 Students Create Ornaments for National Christmas Tree Display in Washington, D.C.

Students from 56 schools across the country, including Maine Regional School Unit (RSU) 38 serving Maranacook area students, have designed one-of-a-kind ornaments for the 2020 National Christmas Tree display on the Ellipse in President’s Park. These unique ornaments will adorn 56 smaller trees that surround the National Christmas Tree. The trees represent each U.S. state, territory and the District of Columbia as part of the America Celebrates ornament display. This year, several ornaments from each school will also be displayed inside the White House.| More

PODCAST: How Schools are Addressing the Growing Digital Divide

Chief Innovation Officer Page Nichols from the Maine’s Department of Education (DOE) participated in a podcast recently with Taher Behbehani, General Manager and Head of Mobile B2B Business at Samsung Electronics America. The national podcast features a discussion about how the Maine DOE and Maine school systems have been navigating the ongoing COVID-19 crisis that has caused schools to deliver instruction in many different ways, including the partnership between Samsung and Maine that gave preK-12 students across the state access to the virtual classroom with Samsung Knox for Education. | More

Get to Know the DOE Team: Meet Maryalice Crofton

Maine DOE Team member Maryalice Crofton from Volunteer Maine is being highlighted this week as part of the Get to Know the Maine DOE Campaign. Learn a little more about Maryalice| More

Maine Schools Sharing Success Stories

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Professional Development & Training Opportunities

Educator Learning Opportunity: Creating Circles of Wellness for Ourselves and Our Communities

Join us for a collaborative endeavor where PEAR (Partnerships in Education and Resilience), out of Harvard University, will facilitate an online event focused on celebrating individual and community wellness — and it’s 100% free and open to all educators across Maine. | More

Dec. 10 Webinar: Maine Ethnic Community Based Organizations Share Connection & Social Support Services Available During COVID-19

A coalition of Maine’s Ethnic Community Based Organizations (ECBO) will share the structure, content, and scope of the work they are doing to support their communities, particularly during the pandemic. | More

Free Webinar: Addressing Challenges and Safety Concerns for Non-attending or Truant Students

The Maine Department of Education’s(DOE) Maine School Safety Center (MSSC) is pleased to offer a webinar concerning Maine schools’ current challenges and concerns for students that are non-attending or truant. The webinar will offer an opportunity for school and district staff to talk about their current concerns and issues in a forum style webinar, where stakeholder experts will be available to inform and answer questions.  Present at the webinar will be representatives from the legal field, school administration, law enforcement, and the Maine Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) to walk through the legal and practical process of connecting with and re-engaging students and their families. | More

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Latest DOE Career/Project Opportunities View current Maine Department of Education employment opportunities here