NMRC/PAE Education Academy Program Accepting Applications

A new Education Academy offered at Portland Adult Education is now accepting applications. The Education Academy prepares people who were teachers in their home country to be teachers or educational technicians here in Maine.

The Portland Public Schools launched the Education Academy as part of the Teach Portland initiative in January 2022 to build and diversify its educator workforce. This new intensive program, targeted specifically at foreign-trained teachers, will be offered by the New Mainers Resource Center (NMRC) at Portland Adult Education starting Jan. 7. It is designed to build on the skills and experience that these teachers bring with them from their home countries.

The Education Academy will combine coursework with intensive English and a student classroom experience.  It will prepare students in the program to work as educational technicians and substitute teachers. It will also provide the guidance and support they need to ultimately apply for and pursue teacher certification.  Students may be eligible for scholarships and other supportive services that will help them with the costs of any college courses they may need for teacher certification.

Education Academy which is now accepting applications for classes that start this September.

  • This program prepares people who were teachers in their home country to be Teachers or Educational Technicians here in Maine
  • It is also a good program for people with other backgrounds and degrees who are interested in entering the teaching profession
  • It provides an overview of education in the US including: classroom management, teaching methods, becoming a Maine educator, and teaching exceptional students
  • The program includes a practicum, or practical experience in a classroom, and also advice and assistance applying for teacher certification and jobs

Here is a link to more information about the program and its requirements:  Education Academy Slideshow.

Here is a link to the Education Academy Application.

For more information about the Education Academy, go to the New Mainers Resource Center website at: www.nmrcmaine.org or call Portland Adult Education at: 207-874-8155

eWorkshop: Virtual Professional Learning Community for Administrators 

The Maine Department of Education (DOE) welcomes all school and SAU-level administrators to participate in an eight-part virtual professional learning community (VPLC) this fall. The VPLC will center on the WIDA asynchronous eWorkshop “School Improvement Planning for the Equitable Education of Multilingual Learners.” This eWorkshop will introduce school leaders to leadership principles and practices to provide equitable educational opportunities for multilingual learners, based on a distributive leadership model.  

Participants will complete the eWorkshop independently and then come together with their colleagues and facilitator Robin Fleck, ESOL Consultant, to reflect and discuss what they have learned. The eWorkshop includes eight modules that take about 45 minutes each to complete. 

During the eWorkshop, participants will have an opportunity to explore effective leadership practices that aim to:  

  1. create and maintain an inclusive, school-wide learning environment focused on multilingual learners;  
  2. promote effective instructional practices for multilingual learners;  
  3. leverage multiple resources and build capacity for staff to meet the needs of multilingual learners; and  
  4. collaborate with families and the local community to enact school improvement solutions.  

Videos, readings, and opportunities for reflection, as well as suggestions and resources for team planning activities are included. At the end of the eWorkshop, participants will be introduced to the WIDA SIS, an online- school improvement assessment tool that can be utilized in the school improvement process to prioritize learning opportunities for multilingual learners. 

If you’re interested in participating in this VPLC, submit your contact information and scheduling preferences here. Recognizing the challenges of an administrator’s calendar, we will schedule the sessions between mid-September and mid-November, according to the availability of everyone who would like to participate. 

There must be a minimum of eight registrants in order for the VPLC to be held. If you have any questions, contact Robin Fleck at robin.fleck@maine.gov 


Virtual Workshop Series for New ESOL (English Speakers of Other Languages) Teachers

The Maine Department of Education (DOE) invites educators to participate in a series of virtual workshops on topics related to serving multilingual learners and managing an English Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) program. While the sessions will be targeted to the needs of new ESOL teachers, all are welcome! More experienced ESOL teachers, and others whose work relates to the topics listed, will also find information of value and benefit from connecting with colleagues across Maine.

See the list of sessions below for dates and topics of focus. Sessions will be held from 3:00-4:00pm every other Thursday. Participants should plan to attend all sessions in the series, to the extent possible. Contact hours will be available for participation in the sessions. Ideally participants, as a cohort of learners, will develop and sustain a professional connection beyond the bi-weekly sessions.

The workshops will be facilitated by Rebecca Carey, Maine DOE ESOL Consultant, and will feature guest speakers during some sessions. If you have any questions, contact Rebecca at rebecca.carey@maine.gov.

Register HERE to receive the Zoom links.

Session 1 – Thursday, September 1, 2022

  1. Welcoming newcomers and families
    • Ways to support your registration process/registration staff
    • Ways to access interpreting and translating services
    • Elements of a culturally responsive school setting
    • Essential information to share with newcomers
  2. Identifying English learners
    • Language Use Survey
    • ELP screeners
    • LAC meetings
    • Entering multilingual learner data into the student data system
      • Steps and important dates
  3. Reviewing state expectations
    • Timeline for identification
    • Service provision guidance

Session 2 – Thursday, September 15, 2022

  1. How to effectively use the LAC meeting
    • Timeline
    • Members
    • Gathering information
    • Learning opportunities for the team
  2. ILAP
    • Purpose
    • Examples
    • Using the WIDA ELD Standards
  3. How to have effective parent conferences/communications
  4. Student data system revisited for October 1st student count readiness

Session 3 – Thursday, September 29, 2022

  1. Supporting Multilingualism
    • Leveraging primary languages in the classroom
    • Asset-based approach
      • Creating student profiles
      • Activities: Getting to know students
    • Uses for instruction
  2. Identifying available resources
    • Maine DOE multilingual learners webpages
    • Maine DOE ESOL & bilingual programs resources Padlet
    • Maine DOE ESOL Listserv
    • Free WIDA self-paced eWorkshops

Session 4 – Thursday, October 13, 2022

  1. Understanding acculturation and how to support students in this process
    • Strategies for culturally responsive teaching
  2. Questions/needs of the group

 Session 5 – Thursday, October 27, 2022

  1. Preparing students for ACCESS for ELLs and Alternate ACCESS for ELLs testing
  2. Preparing your colleagues, administrators, and testing space for ACCESS for ELLs and Alternate ACCESS for ELLs administration

Maine DOE Hosts First ‘Teachers of Adult Multilingual Summer Institute’ Drawing in Rural Districts Eager to Support New Learners

As the housing crisis felt across Maine has driven some of Maine’s newest multilingual residents out of urban areas and into rural parts of our State, the Maine Department of Education (DOE) and Maine’s adult education multilingual learning programs are right there to provide the support they need. 

The first-ever, “Teachers of Adult Multilingual Summer Institute” was held in Sugarloaf and virtually recently. Hosted by Maine DOE’s Adult Education Team and endearingly referred to as, “Camp Sugarloaf,” the gathering featured nationally renowned educator and speaker Jayme Adelson-Goldstein who led a workshop, which took place over the course of the three-day institute, on implementing high-leverage practices and differentiation in virtual and  in-person multilingual classrooms with interactive activities that enabled participants to get to know each other and dig into valuable content and best practices for educating adult learners who are multilingual. 

In addition to Adelson-Goldstein’s full group sessions, the institute also offered various breakout sessions led by educators working in some of Maine’s more urban adult education programs.  

While Rochelle Yanike Hale from Portland Adult Education led a session on “How to Increase Student Writing in a Remote Class,” Virginie Akimana from Portland Adult Education hosted a session on, “Considerations for Working with Adult Multilingual Learners,” and Tekia Cox from Augusta Adult & Community Education hosted participants for a Roundtable Discussion on Orientation for Multilingual Learners. Also offering sessions were Kelli Park from University of Southern Maine (USM)/Merrymeeting Adult Education, Elizabeth Cuccinello DiLalla from RSU 13 Adult & Community Education, Moira Taylor from Portland Adult Education, Lisa Parisio from Immigrant Legal Advocacy Project, Amy Hatch from Lewiston Adult Education, and Anya Enright from EnGen. 

Members of Maine DOE’s Adult Education Team also hosted various other sessions on everything from CASAS (assessments) to community resources, and the Teaching the Skills That Matter (TSTM) Toolkit. In addition, the institute also provided participants with ample opportunities for networking, relaxing, and communicating and collaborating with each other across the three-day event.    

Meet the Adult Education Team: 

Back row: Kelley Heath- Adult Ed Data/High School Education Coordinator, Amy Hatch-Adult Ed MaineStars Data Entry, Christy Le-Adult Ed Micro-credential Assistant, Tammy Ranger- Director, Workforce Development & Innovative Pathways 

Front row: Megan Dichter- Adult Ed Workforce Development/ESL Coordinator, Amy Poland- Adult Ed Prof Dev/ME College Transition Coordinator, Monique Roy-Director Adult Education 

While this is the first official Summer Institute hosted for Maine’s adult educators, the Maine DOE’s Adult Education Team hopes to plan a summer institute annually each year going forward. 

Seal of Biliteracy Earned by Maine High School Seniors

The Maine Department of Education congratulates 347 Maine high school seniors who are this year’s recipients of the Maine Seal of Biliteracy!

The Seal of Biliteracy recognizes student achievement in language learning. Graduating seniors who are proficient in English and at least one additional language may earn the Seal of Biliteracy by demonstrating their skills on an approved assessment (see eligibility criteria). This award elevates the study of languages and provides students an edge for their college applications and professional careers. Students who attend a University of Maine System campus may also earn college credits.

The Seal of Biliteracy distinction for graduating seniors honors students who have studied world languages in school, students who have spoken English and another language at home and in their communities, and students who have learned English at school. Learning another language is an impressive accomplishment, and the Department commends all multilingual students for their efforts.

We would also like to recognize the incredible work of World Languages and English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) teachers, who support students in their multilingual journeys. Language educators empower students with linguistic and cultural understanding that will be invaluable to them throughout their personal, academic, and professional lives. Teaching students another language goes beyond grammar and vocabulary – it is truly opening a door to another world and enabling students to explore and experience that world through the power of language!

Congratulations to the Class of 2022 Seal of Biliteracy recipients and their teachers! If your school isn’t yet participating in the Seal of Biliteracy and would like further information, please reach out to April Perkins, ESOL & Bilingual Programs Specialist, at april.perkins@maine.gov.

2022 Participating Schools include:

  • Blue Hill Harbor School
  • Brewer High School
  • Brunswick High School
  • Camden Hills Regional High School
  • Cape Elizabeth High School
  • Caribou High School
  • Casco Bay High School
  • Cony High School
  • Deering High School
  • Falmouth High School
  • Gardiner Area High School
  • Gray-New Gloucester High School
  • Greely High School
  • Hampden Academy
  • Houlton High School
  • Kennebunk High School
  • Lincoln Academy
  • Maranacook Community High School
  • Morse High School
  • Blue High School
  • Noble High School
  • North Yarmouth Academy
  • Orono High School
  • Portland High School
  • Presque Isle High School
  • Scarborough High School
  • South Portland High School
  • Westbrook High School
  • Windham High School
  • Winthrop High School
  • York High School

2022 Seal recipients’ languages include English and:

  • Arabic
  • Bengali
  • Bulgarian
  • Chinese
  • Dari
  • French
  • German
  • Hindi
  • Latin
  • Lingala
  • Portuguese
  • Russian
  • Somali
  • Spanish
  • Vietnamese