Nominations Open for Governor’s Volunteerism Awards

There are many different types of positions that help our schools operate day to day, serving as a vital part of Maine’s communities, including our beloved school volunteers! Now is the time to recognize these wonderful human beings for all of the selfless things they do for their community. In addition, there are many youth across our state that take community service learning to a whole different level by taking an active role volunteering in their community and making a real difference.The Governor’s Awards for Service and Volunteerism have celebrated and recognized the role of citizen volunteers in the success and vitality of Maine communities since 1987.  The awards seek to inspire others to be active in civic life and follow in the footsteps of those recognized.Use one of the links below to access nomination instructions and additional information for each form of recognition. All nominations are due April 30 by 5 p.m.

Adult Roll of Honor

Youth Roll of Honor

Competitive awards: Individuals, teams and organizations 

Volunteers make the hearts of Maine communities beat!

Maine Celebrates 21 New and 5 Renewed National Board Certified Teachers in Virtual Ceremony

Maine recognized 21 teachers newly certified by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS) during an April 8 virtual ceremony. These exemplary educators join more than 400 teachers across the state who have gone through this highly reflective and transformative professional development, including five of their colleagues who renewed their National Board Certification this year.

Friends, family, colleagues and administrators joined the celebration hosted by the Maine Education Association (MEA) and the National Board Certified Teachers Network of Maine (NBCTs of Maine). Offering congratulatory remarks were Education Commissioner Pender Makin, MEA President and NBCT Grace Leavitt, NBCTs of Maine Chair and NBCT, Melissa Guerrette, and Representative Rebecca Millett.

Featured speaker Kelly Elder, NBPTS, NBCT Board of Directors, 2017 Montana Teacher of the Year and 2018 NEA Foundation Fellow, shared a talk titled “What’s Next? Moving Forward from the Intersection of Emotional Health and Learning in a Post-pandemic World” Elder, a grade 6 geography teacher, acknowledged the challenges involved in teaching in a year unlike any other, and the disproportionate impact the pandemic had on our most vulnerable students. Elder noted that NBCTs, given their experience in such a highly reflective process as National Board Certification, are uniquely positioned to create, innovate, and lead the differentiated work (including rethinking assessment practices) in the coming years, in order to meet the needs of all of our students.

The event’s emcee, Heidi Goodwin, NBCT and NB Professional Learning Facilitator, was joined by Kristi Charette, NBCT and NB Professional Learning Facilitator, in leading this year’s unique pinning ceremony, with attendees being “pinned” by a family member at home. Dan Allen, MEA Professional Development Director, offered closing remarks, encouraging the NBCTs to engage in ongoing leadership opportunities, including offering support to candidates working on National Board Certification.

The journey to National Board Certification is a challenging one—the process, on average, requires nearly 400 hours of time and effort to achieve. Educators must submit a detailed portfolio that includes examples of student work and video recordings that show how they teach and interact with students. In addition, they must submit a reflective piece on student assessment and learning and demonstrate mastery of the content of their chosen certification area. This evidence must meet the Five Core Propositions and the National Board Standards, a body of knowledge that is maintained by teachers. Practicing teachers, through a peer-review process, assess the portfolios.

In pursuing and achieving National Board Certification, the following teachers have demonstrated an outstanding commitment to their students, schools, and districts. Please join us in congratulating them!

Maine 2020 New NBCTS

  Name National Board Certificate Position District/School
1. Heather Sinclair Science: Early Adolescence Middle School Science Teacher RSU 2 Hall-Dale Middle High School
2. Heidi Corliss Music: Early Adolescence/YA Fine & Performing Arts Teacher RSU 22 Hampden Academy
3. Alyce Delfino Exceptional Needs Specialist: Early Adolescence/ YA Special Education Teacher Five Town CSD

Camden Hills Regional High School

4. Christopher Driscoll Mathematics, Early Adolescence Middle School Math Teacher Falmouth Public Schools/ Falmouth Middle School
5. Sara Jones Mathematics: Early Adolescence Middle School Math Teacher Falmouth Public Schools/ Falmouth Middle School
6. Tara Robertson Literacy: Reading -Lang Arts: Early & Middle Childhood Title I Teacher Lisbon Public Schools

Lisbon Community School

7. Linda LaCasse Literacy: Reading -Language Arts: Early & Middle Childhood Title I Teacher Lisbon Public Schools

Lisbon Community School

8. Julia Bemis Science: Adolescence and Young Adulthood High School Science Teacher RSU 6 Bonny Eagle HS
9. Jennifer Fronczak- Math: Early Adolescence Middle School Math Teacher RSU 84 East Grand School
10. Vicki Bailey Generalist: Early Childhood Grade 1 Teacher RSU 22 Earl C McGraw Elementary School
11. Audrey Bracciodieta Exceptional Needs Specialist: Early Childhood through Young Adulthood Special Education Teacher RSU 22 George B Weatherbee School
12. Jennifer Brown Generalist: Early Childhood Kindergarten Teacher RSU 12 Chelsea Elementary School
13. Robin Tiller Science: Early Adolescence Middle School Science Teacher Biddeford Public Schools

Biddeford Middle School

14. Rachel Singh Generalist: Early Childhood Grade 1 Teacher Bar Harbor Public Schools

Conners-Emerson School

15. Rebecca Sanborn Generalist: Early Childhood Kindergarten Teacher RSU 60 North Berwick Elementary
16. Krista St. Cyr English as a New Language: Early Adolescence/YA English Language Learner Teacher Lewiston Public Schools

Lewiston Middle School

17. Lacey Todd Generalist: Middle Childhood Grade 5 Science Teacher RSU 10 Mountain Valley Middle School
18. Kaitlin Woodbury Literacy, Reading Language Arts: Early/Middle Childhood Grade 1 Teacher RSU 1 Phippsburg Elementary School
19. Lorene Hinkley – Gordon Literacy, Reading Language Arts: Early/Middle Childhood Title I Teacher RSU 49 Albion Elementary School
20. Jessica Archer English Language Arts: Early Adolescence Middle School: English, Science and Health Teacher RSU 26 Orono Middle School
21. Danielle Quimby Exceptional Needs Specialist: Early Childhood through Young Adulthood Gifted & Talented Teacher RSU 6 Buxton Center Elementary School

Maine 2020 Renewed NBCTS

  Name National Board Certificate Position District/ School
1. Laurie Alves Literacy, Reading Language Arts: Early/Middle Childhood Grade 5 Teacher Scarborough Public Schools Wentworth School
2. Brian Cote Science: Early Adolescence Middle School Science Teacher Bar Harbor Public School

Conners-Emerson School

3. David Doubleday Literacy, Reading Language Arts: Adolescence/YA High School English Language Arts Five Town CSD

Camden Hills Regional High School

4. Rachel Landry Exceptional Needs Specialist: Early Childhood/YA Special Education Teacher Portland Public Schools

Harrison Lyseth Elementary School

5. Joanne Powers Literacy, Reading Language Arts: Early Middle Childhood Elementary Literacy Teacher RSU 1 Dike-Newell School

National Board certification is voluntary and open to all teachers who have at least three years of classroom experience and a bachelor’s degree. Certification is available in 25 certificate areas, from preschool through 12th grade.

Maine offers an annual salary supplement for teachers who have achieved National Board Certification and scholarships to support up to 30 teachers, annually, in attaining National Board Certification.

Contact information for National Board Certification in Maine:

NBCTS of Maine:

Heidi Goodwin:

Melissa Guerrette:

Susan O’Brien:

Kristi Charette:

Maine Education Association:

Dan Allen:

Maine Department of Education:

Tamara Ranger: tamara.ranger@Maine.Gov

2021 Curriculum Leader of The Year Instructional Coach of The Year

Each year the Maine Curriculum Leader’s Association (MCLA) recognizes and celebrates passionate, dedicated leaders who have championed learner centered practices in their learning communities as well as in the larger Maine education community.  The Curriculum Leader of the Year (CLOY) and Instructional Coach of the Year (ICOY) selection committees are welcoming nominations between now and April 30th.

Selection Timeline:

  • April 1, 2021: Nominations open
  • April 30, 2021: Nominations close
  • May 2021: Selection Committees review nominations
  • June 1, 2021: CLOY and ICOY announced
  • July 1, 2021: CLOY and ICOY begin 1yr term on MCLA Board

The selection committees include previous CLOYs and ICOYs, MCLA Board members, and Instructional Coaching CoOp members.

For information about nomination requirements and process please visit the MCLA Website.

MEDIA RELEASE: World Language & ESOL Teachers of the Year Announced by FLAME

The Foreign Language Association of Maine (FLAME) honored award recipients at a virtual conference held recently including Maine’s 2021 World Language Teacher of the Year, Maine’s 2021 ESOL Teacher of the Year, and the Student Recognition Award.

Julie Speno
Julie Speno

Maine’s 2021 World Language Teacher of the Year is Julie Speno, a Spanish teacher at Camden-Rockport Elementary School. Julie has taught Spanish for more than 25 years and currently teaches elementary Spanish to K-4th grade students. In addition to teaching, Julie has presented over 200 hours of professional development at FLAME and many other conferences about teaching languages in elementary schools. Julie’s session “Calm in the Classroom” was chosen Best of FLAME 2019 and she was the keynote speaker at the NNELL (National Network for Early Language Learning) summer institute. Julie is especially well-known as the creator and illustrator of El Mundo de Pepita, providing resources for teaching elementary languages to teachers across the country.

The World Language Teacher of the Year award honors a Maine educator who has achieved outstanding results in teaching modern or classical languages. Other nominees for the award were: Traci Sorti, RSU 29; Jonna Bouré, Caribou High School; and Deb Backman, Cony High School.

The Maine English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) Teacher of the Year award was also presented this year for the first time. The new award is co-sponsored by FLAME and the Maine Department of Education and honors outstanding ESOL educators in Maine.

Elena Sullivan
Elena Sullivan

This year’s ESOL Teacher of the Year is Elena Sullivan. Elena currently coordinates Augusta’s K-12 ESOL program and teaches at Cony Middle/High School. She has dedicated 31 years to teaching, both as a Spanish teacher and as an ESOL teacher. Elena’s leadership is evident in her willingness to serve her community and advocate fiercely for language education at the state level as a member of the FLAME Board and incoming president and at the national level in Washington through the Joint National Committee for Languages – National Council for Languages and International Studies. She has forged strong connections with the families of her students, supporting them as they transition to life in Augusta. Focused on equity for English learners, Elena works closely with content area teachers to ensure they are equipped with effective ESOL strategies.

Tommaso Wheeler
Tommaso Wheeler

In addition to FLAME’s Teacher of the Year Awards, they also presented the Student Recognition Award to Thomas Wheeler, a student at Orono High School. Thomas is an exceptional student of both French and Spanish. He jumped into French III as an 8th grader, earned his Maine Seal of Biliteracy in French in 10th grade, and won a silver medal in the Grand Concours, ranking 8th nationally. After completing all possible French courses, Thomas then moved to Spanish. He has already earned a silver medal on the National Spanish Exam and hopes to qualify for Maine’s Seal of Biliteracy in Spanish too. Thomas has a heart for service as well, most notably volunteering with CISV (formerly known as Children’s International Summer Villages), a youth organization to develop peace around the world.

The Maine Department of Education in joins FLAME in honoring the hard work and dedication of these amazing honorees.

For more information about FLAME or the awards, please visit: