MEDIA RELEASE: Maine Students Selected for United States Senate Youth Program

Students to Participate in the First Online Program and to Receive $10,000 Scholarship

The United States Senate Youth Program (USSYP) announces that high school students Mr. Iann Leigh and Mr. Hilton Scott Petersen will join Senator Susan M. Collins and Senator Angus S. King in representing Maine during the 59th annual USSYP Washington Week, to be held March 14 — 17, 2021. Iann Leigh of Bangor and Hilton Petersen of Nobleboro were selected from among the state’s top student leaders to be part of the 104 national student delegation who will each also receive a $10,000 college scholarship for undergraduate study. Due to the pandemic, the 2021 program will break ground as the first-ever fully virtual Washington Week, and is designed to be a highly interactive and exciting education and leadership forum for the nation’s most outstanding student leaders. During the program week, the student delegates will attend online meetings and briefings with senators, the president, a justice of the Supreme Court, leaders of cabinet agencies and senior members of the national media, among others.

Iann Leigh
Iann Leigh

Iann Leigh, a junior at Bangor High School, serves as a representative to the Student Council and secretary of the Class Council. He started his leadership career as a Boy Scout senior patrol leader where he organized multiple service projects for area causes. Iann has served as manager of a state senate campaign and has interned for political campaigns for the Maine Republican Party. A member of his school’s debate team where he won the junior varsity state champion award in 2020, Iann has successfully coached new members to ensure their success. (Photo curtesy of Bangor School Department)

Scott Peterson
Scott Peterson

Scott Petersen, a senior at Lincoln Academy, serves as president of the Senior Class, was appointed co-captain of the debate team for both the state champion 2019 team and State runner-up 2020 team, and has been an individual debate national qualifier. In addition to debate activities, Scott is an award-winning speaker with his local Rotary organization, leads the Alpha Gamma service fraternity as co-president, serves as a member of the National Honor Society, and is a three-time recipient of Lincoln Academy’s English Award. Scott volunteers at local food pantries, the town of Nobleboro’s summer festival, and at a local nature preserve. He has studied Spanish abroad, plays five instruments, has starred in past musical productions and has played varsity tennis. Scott plans to continue his studies of economics, politics, and policy at Brown University next year. (Photo curtesy of Aria Tan)

Chosen as alternates to the 2021 program were Mr. Joseph Labrie, a resident of Cape Elizabeth, who attends Cape Elizabeth High School and Mr. Zachary Whiting, a resident of Cumberland, who attends Greely High School.

The USSYP was created by Senate Resolution 324 in 1962 and has been sponsored by the Senate and fully funded by The Hearst Foundations since inception. Originally proposed by Senators Kuchel, Mansfield, Dirksen and Humphrey, the Senate leadership of the day, the impetus for the program as stated in Senate testimony is “to increase young Americans’ understanding of the interrelationships of the three branches of government, learn the caliber and responsibilities of federally elected and appointed officials, and emphasize the vital importance of democratic decision making not only for America but for people around the world.”

Delegates and alternates are selected by the state departments of education nationwide and the District of Columbia and Department of Defense Education Activity, after nomination by teachers and principals. The chief state school officer for each jurisdiction confirms the final selection. To learn more about USSYP in Maine, check out

Maine DOE Update – February 26, 2021

From the Maine Department of Education

Reporting Items

EPS High-Cost Out-of-District Report (EF-S-214) Open for Reporting on March 1, 2021; Deadline is April 15, 2021

The EF-S-214, also known as the EPS High-Cost Out-of-District Report will be open for data entry to Maine public schools on March 1 in the Maine DOE’s NEO Portal. | More

The Special Education Staff Certification Report (EF-S-05 Part II) Open on March 1, 2021; Deadline is April 15, 2021.

The EF-S-05 Part II Special Education Staff Certification report must be verified and certified by the Special Education Director in the Maine Department Of Education’s NEO System. | More

| Visit the DC&R Reporting Calendar |

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 to assist schools as they continue with their plans to deliver instruction and support to students safely. For the second time since January 28 update, all counties remain green.  | More

Maine Learning Results Review Writing Teams Now Accepting Applications

The Maine Department of Education is performing a regularly scheduled review of the Maine Learning Results for the following areas: Health Education and Physical Education, Visual and Performing Arts, and World Languages. The Department is looking for participants to serve as part of the writing teams this summer. | More

There is Still Time to Nominate Maine Schools to Win a New Fitness Center

Maine has been selected to participate in the 2021 DON’T QUIT! Campaign, a national effort to encourage physical fitness in youth. As part of the campaign, the National Foundation for Governors’ Fitness Councils (NFGFC) will gift Fitness Centers to three Maine schools that use new and unique methods to promote student physical activity and wellness to help them construct fitness centers. | More

Service Project Funding Opportunity

In partnership with the Maine Masonic Charitable Foundation, Volunteer Maine is excited to offer service support grants to groups working with middle and high school students to learn about and tackle issues around hunger and food insecurity in their communities. | More

There is Still Time to Nominate Maine Schools to Win a New Fitness Center

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the way schools and districts have been offering meals to children across the state has changed dramatically. Food service staff have worked tirelessly to adapt and come up with many creative methods for meal service by schools. | More

Opportunity for Partnerships with French Schools

The Maine Department of Education is excited to announce an opportunity for middle and high school teachers to participate in cross-cultural partnerships with schools in France. This opportunity has been made possible through a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Académie de Nantes, the governmental body overseeing education in the Pays de la Loire region of France. | More

Maine Schools Sharing Success Stories

| Submit your Maine School Success Story |

Professional Development & Training Opportunities

Moving Toward Understanding: Fostering an Intercultural Learning Environment

A workshop series by Maine Intercultural Communication Consultants (MICC), a women-owned business based in Portland, Maine, with years of experience helping schools, organizations, and individuals develop interculturally and navigate differences effectively.   | More

MTSS Professional Development Opportunity: Four-Step Problem Solving in Tier 1

Time is short and needs are high. As we rapidly progress through the second half of the 20-21 school year, many educators begin to ask, “Have I gotten enough done? Are my kids ready for the next grade? How will I ever meet the needs of those I notice struggling with the time I have left?” | More

Education Innovators Panel: Equity in Education March 4th at 3pm

Attendees will hear from district, teacher, and nonprofit leaders about promising practices used to close opportunity gaps. Attendees will hear about equity initiatives implemented across school districts, examine classroom-based practices, and learn about building community support for equity priorities. | More

| Visit the Professional Development Calendar |

Latest DOE Career/Project Opportunities

View current Maine Department of Education employment opportunities here

EPS High-Cost Out-of-District Report (EF-S-214) Open for Reporting on March 1, 2021; Deadline is April 15, 2021

The EF-S-214, also known as the EPS High-Cost Out-of-District Report will be open for data entry to Maine public schools on March 1 in the Maine DOE’s NEO Portal.

School districts should sign into the report as early as possible to allow time for data entry as well as the two-step submission process. The Department must approve the report by April 15 to allow time to make possible EPS adjustments.

Adjustments to the Special Education High-Cost Out-of-District allocation will be based on costs exceeding:

  • $18,586 for placements in Regional Special Education Programs,
  • $27,879 for placements in other school administrative units, and
  • $37,172 for placements in private schools.

Below are a few important things to note about the EF-S-214 report:

  • School districts will need to project the tuition cost for the full fiscal year.
  • This report is required for all publicly funded school districts, including districts that do not meet the High-Cost Out-of-District tuition threshold, these districts must login and submit “no students to report”

The report can be located by logging into NEO at:

Navigate to→ Special Education → Forms → EFS-214

Questions about the report should be direct to Stephanie Clark Fiscal Compliance Associate for the Maine Department of Education at or 207-624-6807.


The Special Education Staff Certification Report (EF-S-05 Part II) Open on March 1, 2021; Deadline is April 15, 2021.

The EF-S-05 Part II Special Education Staff Certification report must be verified and certified by the Special Education Director in the Maine Department Of Education’s NEO System. The report is used to verify the full-time equivalency (FTE) and qualification status of special education teachers, paraprofessionals (educational technicians), and related services personnel who were employed or contracted to provide special education services to students with disabilities ages 3 through 20 as of December 1, 2020.

  • Please note that this will be final year that the EF-S-05 Part II will allow for adjustments of numbers. The 2021-2022 collection will come directly from NEO staff and the EF-S-05 Part II will only be a certification of those numbers.  The timeline of the certification will also change to align with the NEO staff certification timeline.  More information will be provided in summer and fall of 2021.

Access instructions for completing the EF-S-05 Part II report.

If you have trouble logging into NEO or have other technical issues, contact the help desk at 207-624-6896 or .

For questions about the EF-S-05 Part II report, contact Brandi Giguere at 207-446-6526 or

School Union 76 Celebrates Public Schools Week with an Inspiring Video

Closing out National Public Schools Week this week, School Union 76 (SU76) made up of Brooklin School, Deer Isle-Stonington Elementary School, Deer Isle-Stonington High School, Isle au Haut School and Sedgwick Elementary School created a heartwarming and informative video about how their community has pulled together to ensure that students continue learning through the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a letter to the community recently, SU76 Superintendent Christian Elkington expressed his gratitude:

“The efforts made by all to have learning continue during the pandemic is truly a work of caring, kindness, determination and toughness,”

“More than at any time as your Superintendent of Schools, over this last year I have felt extremely fortunate and honored to be working with each of SU 76’s Public Schools! Throughout the pandemic our Nation’s Public Schools, including our own, have found differing ways to help our young people learn, grow and achieve. I have seen first-hand and so believe strongly that each and every day we in SU 76 are making Lemonade out of Lemons. Through positive efforts we are problem-solving so that our students can move forward and continue to learn, grow and achieve.”

Check out the SU76 National Public Schools Week Video:

Like schools across Maine, SU 76 Schools is continuing to take steps forward in support of their students and community. Their video and story speaks to the hard work of schools across Maine and serves as an inspiring message that celebrates everything that Maine’s communities have accomplished through the past year.

Information for this story was provided by School Union 76 as part of the Maine Schools Sharing Success Campaign. If you have a story or an idea, email it to Rachel at