Category Archives: Operations

Annual School Bus Purchase Program opens November 1

The Maine Department of Education is accepting applications for new school buses through the annual School Bus Purchase Program. The application process opens Nov. 1 and closes Nov. 25.

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Major Capital School Construction application now available

Maine public schools invited to participate in new application cycle

Augusta – Maine public schools wishing to participate in the new application cycle for major capital construction projects can now download the application from the Maine Department of Education’s website.

The direct link to the application is:

The application will be due to the Department by April 14, 2017.

A new application cycle enables Maine public schools to apply for state support in order to undertake a major renovation or addition project, or to build a new facility.

If a school applied during the last cycle in 2010-2011, they will need to reapply if they wish to be included in this application cycle.

The Department will review completed applications and create a “needs-based” initial priority list, to be followed by the creation of a final priority list and an approved projects list.  The entire application and review process is expected to take about two years and is governed by Chapter 61 of Department of Education and State Board of Education joint rules.

Questions about the application should be directed to Scott Brown, Maine DOE’s Director of School Construction, at Questions and answers that are applicable to the process will be posted online at: in an effort to provide all schools the same information.

Media inquiries should be directed to Jamie Logan, Maine DOE’s Communications Director, at or at 624-6747.

Students, Parents, and Schools Celebrate School Bus Driver Appreciation Week Oct. 17-21

A school bus driver’s career is about safely delivering the world’s most precious cargo – our students. Making a positive difference in the life of a child is what motivates school bus drivers.

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Blue Ribbon Commission To Meet Monday, October 17

Augusta – The next meeting of the Commission to Reform Public Education Funding and Improve Student Performance in Maine will be held on Monday, Oct. 17 at 9:00 a.m. at the Lewiston Regional Technical Center. The Lewiston Regional Technical Center is located at 156 East Avenue in Lewiston. A copy of the meeting agenda and documents relating to the Commission’s work will be posted here as they are made available.

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Secretary of State hosting ‘Voter Reg Rumble’ competition to encourage youth registration

This general election season, Maine’s Secretary of State is hosting a voter registration competition encouraging students to get involved in the electoral process.

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Maine DOE accepting School Improvement Grant applications through December 14

The Maine Department of Education will once again be accepting applications for School Improvement Grant (SIG) funding during the 2016-17 school year. Grant awards made under this program could yield up to $1.5 million each to help close achievement gaps.

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Statements of Assurance and MEFS (Maine Educational Financial System) Financial Reconciliations (formerly MEDMS) due Nov. 1

Statements of assurance and MEFS (Maine Educational Financial System) Financial reconciliations, as required by Title 20-A MRSA 6051 §4, are due by November 1, 2016. Any adjustments identified by these reconciliations should be submitted to MEDMS Financial by November 30, 2016.

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State agency client students in crisis placements

The Maine DOE previously (1/22/14) issued guidance with respect to students in crisis placements. That guidance applies as well to students who are hospitalized as a result of a mental health crisis, i.e., those students remain enrolled in their home SAUs, which SAUs remain responsible for providing educational services to them. In the case of a state agency client student in crisis who is expected to return to the same placement after stabilization, the SAU where the placement is located will continue to have educational responsibility. Where, however, the state agency client student (who is not also a state ward) is not expected to return to the same placement, typically because that facility has discharged the student, then the educational responsibility reverts to the SAU of the student’s parents’ residence. The student will remain a state agency client providing that the intention is to place the student outside the home after stabilization; should the intention become to return the student to the parents’ home after stabilization, the student would lose state agency client status and should be enrolled in the home SAU. For state wards, the SAU where the student resided prior to going into crisis remains educationally responsible until such time as the student is placed in another SAU.

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Maine DOE offers 2017 performance evaluation and professional growth mini-booster grants to SAUs

In an effort to continue assisting school administrative units (SAUs) in their performance evaluation and professional growth (PEPG) development the Maine Department of Education is offering mini-booster grants of $1,500 for the purpose of continual development and implementation of PEPG systems. The grants will be available to all Maine districts that operate a school.

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NEO Transportation Upgrade and EFT-24 Vehicle Mileage and Operations Report due date extension

The due date for the year-end EFT-24 Vehicle Mileage and Operations Report has been extended to December 31, 2016. MRSA 20-A section 6801-A provides statutory authority to withhold subsidy until reports are received.

NEO Transportation data system upgrades are scheduled to launch mid-October and early-December. The upgrades are designed to make the system easier to use and provide transportation reports.  Districts that have not been able to enter new vehicle inventory data, EFT-24 report data, or both should enter vehicle inventory and EFT-24 data as soon as possible to avoid the end of year rush. Districts that have successfully entered new vehicle inventory data and completed year-end FY16 data in the EFT-24 report do not need to do anything.

For further information about transportation reports and instructions to enter data visit the Maine DOE Reporting Calendar at Information about school transportation is located on the Maine DOE School Transportation website at

For policy questions regarding school transportation, contact the Maine DOE’s Transportation and Facilities Administrator Pat Hinckley at

For assistance with access to the NEO data system, contact the Maine DOE helpdesk