MEDIA RELEASE: Maine School Teams Advance in 2021 Farm to School Cook-off

Votes were cast and here are the results! Congratulations to South Portland (Kaler Kooks) and RSU 12 (Whitefield Wildcats) who will be advancing to the finals round of the 2021 Maine Farm to School Cook-off. The finals competition will be held on May 5th at the Maine Department of Education’s (DOE) Child Nutrition Culinary Classroom in Augusta.

The Maine Farm to School Cook-off is a statewide culinary competition for teams of school nutrition professionals and students to promote local foods in school meals. The 6th annual competition is organized by the Maine DOE’s Child Nutrition Team.

A big thank you to the four teams below who participated in the virtual event. For more information and to view each team’s videos please visit: https://www.maine.gov/doe/schools/nutrition/programs/localfoods/cookoffvoting.

Early Childhood Text Studies: Free Professional Development for Educators

Specialists from the Maine Department of Education’s Early Learning Team are excited to offer a web-based professional development opportunity for early childhood educators in the Pre-K and Kg grade span. Participants in this opportunity will get the chance to explore strategies for managing student trauma and mental health behaviors through a text study of both Responding to Student Trauma by Stephanie Filio, M.Ed. and A Practical Guide to Mental Health & Learning Disorders for Every Educator by Myles Cooley, Ph.D.

The text studies will take place virtually in hour-long sessions on a weekly basis between November 30, 2020 and April 2, 2021:

  • Responding to Student Trauma by Stephanie Filio, M.Ed is tentatively set to run Nov. 30-January 8, 2021 (with a scheduled holiday break).
  • A Practical Guide to Mental Health & Learning Disorders for Every Educator by Myles Cooley, Ph.D. is tentatively set to run January 11, 2021 through April 2, 2021.

The learning groups will be limited to 48 participants each. Goals of this professional learning opportunity are to improve participant awareness and understanding of what causes student trauma and to acquire strategies for how to better educate our students exhibiting behaviors related to trauma, mental health, and learning disorders.

Those interested are welcomed to register for one or both studies. Participants will receive a copy of the book(s). Contact hours will be provided at the end of each text study.

Registration is free and can be completed here. Registration closes November 13th at 5pm. Participants will be notified on a first come, first served basis.

For further information, please contact Nicole Madore, Early Childhood Specialist at Nicole.madore@maine.gov.

MaineCare Seed Adjustments, Q4’20 Reports Due by October 15, 2020

The recovery of Q4’20 MaineCare Seed will occur in the October 2020 subsidy payment and the Maine DOE is asking school administrative units (SAU) to review their reports by October 15, 2020 to ensure accurate adjustments to subsidy. SAU staff must review student by student claims on both the public and private MaineCare reports for Q4’20 by October 15, 2020.

To access the MaineCare Seed reports, please follow the instructions below.

  1. Log into NEO using this link: https://neo.maine.gov/DOE/neo/Dashboard
  • Anyone who currently has Special Education Director permissions to the Special Education module, will automatically have permissions to access MaineCare reports.
  • As in the past, if a new staff member needs permission to access this module, a request from the Superintendent to the Maine DOE Helpdesk will be necessary. The helpdesk contact information is medms.helpdesk@maine.gov or 207-624-6896.
  1. Click on the Student Data tab
  2. Click on the Student Report tab
  3. Select MaineCare in the Reporting Area drop-down
  4. Choose the quarterly Seed report and the report type (private/public)
  5. Click view report button
  6. Once the report appears on the screen, choose the export button.
  • You may export the reports to Excel but, please be aware that there may be multiple worksheet tabs within the workbook. Save the file to your computer.

If you disagree that a particular student or time period should be on the report, please provide the reason that you disagree along with the following information to stephanie.clark@maine.gov:

  • Identify the type of report (public or private) and the quarter in which the claims are located.
  • State Student ID
  • Service provided dates (From and To)
  • Total amount of Seed being disputed

Summer services: Students must be enrolled for the time period they are receiving educational services. This means that students that are receiving extended school year services in district or extended school year services in an out of district placement must have a primary enrollment for that time period in order for the MDOE to have the most accurate enrollment data to determine SAU responsibility for MaineCare Seed.

Please contact stephanie.clark@maine.gov for more information or technical assistance related to MaineCare Seed.

 

 

Get to Know the DOE Team: Meet Danielle Saucier

Maine DOE team member Danielle (Dee) Saucier is being highlighted this week in the Get to Know the Maine DOE Team Campaign. Learn a little more about Dee in the question and answer below.

What are your roles with DOE?

After 25 years as a classroom teacher and literacy specialist and coach in the public school system I decided to give the Maine DOE a try. In 2017 I joined the department as the Elementary Literacy Specialist and Aroostook County Representative. I have the great honor of supporting educators across the state in areas related to Elementary Literacy. This includes a wide range of opportunities from the K for ME pilot curriculum, to the Grade 1 MOOSE module team and supports for the English Language Arts and Literacy Standards. I have also served as the Regional Representative for Aroostook County, an opportunity through which I’ve had the great honor of visiting schools in the County and meeting many of the educators that support students and communities in the northern most part of our state.

What do you like best about your job?

The best parts of my job are the opportunities that allow and encourage me to continue to learn new information each and every day and interact with educators to learn, grow and share. Education is an ever changing field and I am challenged to stay current with my knowledge by reading, researching and most importantly learning from the knowledge of the people I work with.

How or why did you decide on this career?

I always knew I was going to be a teacher – my mother was a teacher and we worked toward getting our graduate degrees in literacy together. I watched the impact that she had on students for more than 40 years in education and can only hope my impact is comparable. I am proud to say that my daughter has followed in my tradition and is currently starting her 2nd year as a teacher.

What do you like to do outside of work for fun?

I enjoy cooking and spending time with my husband and two adult daughters. The physical distancing of the past 6 months presented many struggles but one silver lining for me was the fact that my grown family was brought together in one home for a few unexpected bonus weeks with lots of family dinners and time to hang out.

Department of Education Update Meeting

Commissioner of Education Pender Makin will be hosting a Zoom update on education in Maine during the current pandemic on Tuesday, June 2, from 4:00-5:00.

Please register in advance for this meeting, as there is a 500-person maximum. You can register here. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Questions or topics of interest may be submitted in advance by emailing Chief-of -Staff Jessica Nixon at Jessica.nixon@maine.gov by Tuesday at 8:00 am.

The meeting will be recorded and posted on our website.