Still Time to Register for 4th Annual Read to Ride Summer Reading Challenge

(Pictured: Display from Turner Primary for Read to Ride)

Summer vacation is a welcome break from the daily school routine for children and parents alike, but the summer months can be detrimental to students’ learning if young minds do not remain active. Summer learning loss is a well-documented phenomenon, particularly with respect to reading achievement.  Students can lose up to three months of reading progress during the summer if they don’t keep reading.  When combined across a child’s PK-8 school career, this can result in 1-2 years of lost reading progress.

Fortunately, the summer slide can be prevented or greatly reduced when students continue to read on a regular basis. By encouraging children to read for enjoyment from a variety of resources and to explore topics of interest, they continue to practice applying the skills they have learned, build their vocabulary, and widen their knowledge of the world.  For students who are not yet reading independently, or just beginning to read, reading to and with parents is equally beneficial.

Once again this year, the Maine Department of Education is collaborating with the Freemasons of Maine to sponsor the Read to Ride Summer Reading Challenge for students in grades PK-8.  The Maine Freemasons have generously donated 48 bikes with helmets as prizes for the Read to Ride Summer Reading Challenge.  During the first three years of this initiative, thousands of Maine children completed the challenge of reading 500 minutes during the summer vacation.  Maine DOE hopes to see this number grow even higher during the summer of 2019.

Any school with students in the PK-8 grade span may register to participate. Participating schools will collect documentation from students who have completed the challenge. They will hold school level drawings to select two students (one boy and one girl) whose names will be entered into the state level drawing to be held on September 25, 2019.   Schools are encouraged to participate in this challenge, to coordinate it with any other summer reading challenges/programs they offer, and to consider soliciting their own local level prizes for students who complete the challenge.  Find details and the link to register your school at the Read to Ride Challenge website.

Questions may be directed to Maine DOE’s Elementary Literacy Specialist, Danielle Saucier at danielle.m.saucier@maine.gov.

Seeking Innovative Educational Leaders to join Maine’s Leadership Development Program

The Maine Department of Education is excited to announce the launch of Maine’s Leadership Development Program (Maine LDP), an initiative designed to build and strengthen instructional leadership skills among Maine’s educational leaders at the school, district, and state levels. In our ongoing efforts to support and foster the educational expertise in Maine, educators who aspire to do the same are invited to take advantage of this high impact opportunity!

The launch phase will focus on building a strong foundation for making the program widely accessible. The Maine DOE has partnered with the National Institute for School Leaders (NISL) to prepare the first cohort of candidates to become certified trainers and facilitators of future cohorts, providing a unique and rewarding leadership opportunity. The Maine DOE’s ESEA Federal Programs, School Turnaround, and Higher Education and Educator Support Services teams are collaborating to provide the executive leadership training to instructional leaders across Maine. Maine’s LDP brings together the Maine DOE’s successful Transformational Leaders’ Network with NISL’s nationally recognized Executive Development Program (EDP).

Maine’s LDP is delivered through a blended learning model and includes study, inquiry, and hands-on activities with practical applications that meet the rigorous expectations for today’s educational leaders. In the first cohort, NISL experts will deliver the Maine LDP curriculum and provide additional training for Maine LDP facilitators. Successful graduates from the initial cohort will deliver the Maine LDP curriculum to future cohorts regionally. Completion of the program can contribute to credit hours for participants pursuing an advanced degree or contact hours for re-certification purposes.

Benefits for Maine Schools

  • Prepares educational leaders to lead for excellence and equity
  • Increases student achievement, fosters a culture of high expectations
  • Enhances teacher recruitment, retention, and quality

Program Curriculum

  • Nationally researched, evidenced-based, and locally delivered in a cohort model
  • Improves the practice of leadership, transforms instruction and student achievement in schools
  • Consists of 12 two-day units, delivered in 12 to 15 months
  • Bridged with online coursework, readings and job-embedded application of key concepts

Characteristics of Ideal Candidates

  • A belief in and commitment to improving instruction and increasing student achievement
  • Experience (five years) in a leadership role at the school, district, and/or state level and background as a classroom teacher. Ideal candidates include, but are not limited to, principals, assistant principals, instructional coaches, deans, Title I directors, department leaders, ESEA coordinators,  special education directors, English Learner directors, assistant superintendents, instruction and curriculum directors, and superintendents.
  • Excellent communications skills; able to effectively facilitate professional development for peers
  • Demonstrated skills in mentoring and coaching
  • Experience as a successful practitioner—able to translate concepts to actions, theory to practice, and programs to craft
  • Able to participate in the entire NISL program and become certified as a Maine LDP facilitator
  • Likely to live and work in Maine for the next five years

The Department encourages experienced educational leaders to consider applying to join the initial cohort of candidates to become certified Maine LDP facilitators of future cohorts. Please visit http://www.maine.gov/doe/educators/maineldp for more information and email nisledp.doe@maine.gov  with any questions. The schedule and application can be found here.

FREE Facilitated School Team Problem Solving Opportunity!

We are very excited to announce that the Maine Teacher Leadership Committee (Teach to Lead® Maine), in collaboration with the Maine Department of Education, United States Department of Education, and the University of Maine Farmington, will be hosting the second annual Powered By Teach to Lead® Summit on August 16, 2019.   This event encourages teams of teachers and administrators to identify a problem of practice or area of need in their school/district and develop a concrete plan to solve the identified problem/issue at their school.  Each team will be paired with a critical friend who will serve as a facilitator throughout the day.  All active Maine educators are welcome to submit ideas as individuals, but we strongly encourage schools/districts to bring a team of stakeholders to make the best progress at the Powered By Teach to Lead® Summit.  Examples of problems of practice that teams identified for the 2018 summit included: trauma-informed schools, development of a makerspace, teacher-led professional development, arts education, and more!

Please consider joining us for this FREE event on August 16th, 2019 at University of Maine Farmington.  As space is limited for this event, idea submissions will be reviewed by a team of education professionals, and invitations for participation, with registration details, will be emailed to those accepted.

Teach to Lead® Maine is a statewide effort, uniting educators, policy-makers, and the greater community around the common vision that every Maine student will benefit from the purposeful involvement of teacher leaders who collaborate in guiding the continuous improvement of schools and the teaching profession.  For more information about teacher leadership, please visit the Maine Department of Education’s website.

Application Link: http://tinyurl.com/poweredbymaine
Flier PDF: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1OAoAx94jopzyGiss5GJISMu9-8lyo0A5/view?usp=sharing
Twitter Handle: @TeachtoLeadME

Emily Gribben
Educator Effectiveness Coordinator
Maine Department of Education
(207) 624-6748

Maine School Wellness Summit

Refill your wellness toolbox with tools (strategies, resources, and programs) to build an action plan for healthier staff, students and school environments starting with two outstanding educators each day:
June 25th: Murray Banks is a motivational speaker and world champion athlete with roots in teaching school. He lives life with a passion for health and well-being every day. This year he will focus his message on the importance of positivity on one’s overall health using hilarious images, imaginative videos, and poignant classroom and personal stories that will inspire all of us.
June 26th: George Manning returns to the Wellness Summit with more tools, resources and insights focused on life, work and the pursuit of balance. He will engage the audience with his enchanting personality and stories that come from more than 40 years of experience teaching psychology at the collegiate level and traveling the country helping organizations and businesses develop healthy and productive work environments.

Maine School Wellness Summit

Register for Event

Regional Think Tanks – Maine Department of Education Wants to Brainstorm With YOU!

Ready for the end of the year? Can’t wait for summer? Before you shift to the summer season, help us to reflect on the 2018/2019 School Year and keep the momentum of discussion for education in Maine.

The Department of Education is hosting several opportunities to collaborate and share experiences in different regions during the 2019 Summer Think Tank series. Join us for half a day to discuss your preferred topic or stay for the day and participate in two sessions.  Lunch will be provided in between the morning and afternoon sessions.

All interested members of your school community are invited to attend, however, an RSVP is required in advance. Please be sure to select the activity/activities (including lunch) so we can be best prepared to host you.

TOPICS INCLUDE:

ME Defines School Success: As part of a statewide conversation, this session will focus on how we define the success of our public schools. Participants will contribute to the identification of common values across the state, tell us what makes your schools successful, and propose ideas as to how we can expand the conversation and how we can use the outcomes of the conversation to promote our public schools.

MLTI: Come and join a conversation about the Maine Learning Technology Initiative (MLTI). Participants will engage in facilitated activities where they will share experiences, ideas, and feedback on the past 18 years of MLTI and discuss hopes for the future of the MLTI program.  Considerations may include devices, device distribution and management, infrastructure, professional development, and funding.

Special Education: Join us for a discussion of what’s working well with special education and what we can improve upon. Share your input on how we can better serve our students with disabilities and provide supports for schools and school administrative units.

Educator Excellence: To ensure that all students receive an excellent education that prepares them to succeed in today’s world, we must systematically increase the quantity and quality of our teaching workforce. This session is looking for feedback on issues related to increasing the recruitment and retention of talented classroom teachers. Topics include high retention pathways into the teaching profession, teacher professional development, and teacher leadership (career lattices that allow teachers to assume leadership roles without leaving the classroom). We are looking for school and district administrators as well as educators to participate in small group discussions to explore these topics. These conversations will assist the Department in enhancing policies and programs to attract and retain outstanding educators for Maine students.

Educator Readiness (7/8 PM Only): This session is an opportunity to provide feedback on a number of areas that impact educator readiness including diversity and equity, talent needs, professional development for educators, student teaching, the changing candidate profile, among others. We are looking for school and district administrators as well as educators to participate in small group discussions with representatives from Maine’s educator preparation programs to explore these topics. This conversation will assist the Department in enhancing policies and programs to support the changing needs of our schools, educators, and students.

JOIN US AT ONE OF THE FOLLOWING EVENTS:

June 11th – Lewiston

Ramada Lewiston and Conference Center
490 Pleasant Street
Lewiston, ME

AM/PM Topics will include:

  • Redefining School Success
  • MLTI
  • ME Special Education
  • Educator Excellence

To Register: http://events.egov.com/eventreg/ME/event.htm?name=doespringthinktanklewiston


June 12th – Saco

Ferry Beach Retreat & Conference Center
5 Morris Ave
Saco, ME

AM/PM Topics will include:

  • Redefining School Success
  • MLTI
  • ME Special Education
  • Educator Excellence

To Register: http://events.egov.com/eventreg/ME/event.htm?name=doesummerthinktanksaco


June 13thBangor

Bangor Banquet & Conference Center
701 Hogan Rd.
Bangor, ME

AM/PM Topics will include:

  • Redefining School Success
  • MLTI
  • ME Special Education
  • Educator Excellence

To Register: http://events.egov.com/eventreg/ME/event.htm?name=doesummerthinktankbangor


June 19th – Winter Harbor

Schoodic Institute
9 Atterbury Circle
Winter Harbor, ME

AM/PM Topics will include:

  • Redefining School Success
  • MLTI
  • ME Special Education
  • Educator Excellence

To Registerhttp://events.egov.com/eventreg/ME/event.htm?name=doesummerthinktankwinterharbor


June 20th – Presque Isle

Presque Isle Inn & Convention Center
116 Main Street
Presque Isle, ME

AM/PM Topics will include:

  • Redefining School Success
  • MLTI
  • ME Special Education
  • Educator Excellence

To Register: http://events.egov.com/eventreg/ME/event.htm
?name=doesummerthinktankpresqueisle


July 8th – Augusta

Senator Inn & Spa
284 Western Ave
Augusta, ME

AM/PM Topics will include:

  • Redefining School Success
  • MLTI
  • ME Special Education

PM Only:

  • Educator Readiness

To Register: http://events.egov.com/eventreg/ME/event.htm?name=doesummerthinktankaugustawrapup