Category Archives: News & Views

Maine DOE Announces 11 New Appointees for the Maine Commission for Community Service

The Maine Department of Education is pleased to announce that the following individuals have been appointed by Governor Paul R. LePage and Maine Department of Education Commissioner Robert G. Hasson, Jr. to serve as commissioners for the Maine Commission for Community Service (MCCS). Founded in 1994, MCCS seeks to foster community service and volunteerism to meet human and environmental needs in the State of Maine.

  • Aaron Dombroski
    A major in the U.S. Army Reserves, Dombroski has taught military science at MIT, worked for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, and Veterans Benefits Administration. He is currently a veterans’ service officer for the Maine Bureau of Veterans Services serving Cumberland County and is active in the State of Maine’s plan to end veterans’ homelessness.
  • Beth Lambert
    Serving as the Commissioner of Education’s designee to the Commission, Lambert is the Visual and Performing Arts Specialist and Aroostook County Regional Representative for the Maine Department of Education. She brings 10 years of education experience at the middle and high school levels and holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theatre Arts, English, and Education from Lawrence University and a Masters in Educational Leadership from Harvard University.
  • Brianna Tibbetts
    A 17 year-old homeschool high school student from North Waterboro, Tibbetts is currently dual enrolled at York County Community College. She is a volunteer camp counselor at Camp Good News in Livermore, Maine and has worked as a Jr. Ski School instructor at Shawnee Peak. Interested in civic engagement, Tibbetts is also participating in TeenPACT, a Christian program that brings teenagers to Augusta to understand the political process and how to engage in it.
  • Cary Olson-Cartwright
    Olson-Cartwright is Assistant Vice President of Corporate Social Responsibility at Unum, and serves on several boards that are focused on supporting Maine’s youth and education including Jobs for Maine’s Graduates and Thomas College. She is a graduate of UMaine and the Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management.
  • Coleman LaPointe
    A 2011 Maine Maritime Academy Graduate, LaPointe is the Director of Strategic Alliances at the Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy. He previously worked as a special assistant and personal aide to former U.S. President George H.W. Bush and served as a personal aide to former Florida Governor Jeb Bush during his 2016 presidential campaign.
  • Honorable David C. Burns
    Senator David C. Burns formerly served in the Maine State Senate, serving the people of Washington County, as well as Gouldsboro, Sullivan, Winter Harbor, and a portion of the East Hancock Unorganized Territory. He has also served for the Maine House of Representatives, as the Chair of the Government Oversight Committee, was a member of the Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee, and a member of the Judiciary Committee. Senator Burns is a retired Maine State Trooper who specialized in investigating major crimes.
  • Diane Dickerson
    Dickerson has been serving as the CEO of Bangor YMCA since 2014, she has dedicated her life to community involvement, serving in previous roles as the chairman of the Las Vegas Chamber of Commerce, chairman of the University Medical Center Foundation, and chairman of The Children’s Miracle Network among others, she has also served as the CEO of her own successful companies throughout her professional career.
  • Jacinda Goodwin
    Jacinda Goodwin currently works for the National Center for Homeless Education. Prior to that she served as the Maine State Homeless Education Coordinator for the Maine Department of Education and also oversaw Maine truancy, dropout and alternative education programs. She has a Bachelor’s degree in psychology from University of Maine at Farmington and a Master’s degree in clinical/behavioral psychology from UMass-Dartmouth.
  • Dr. Melik Peter Khoury
    Currently the president of Unity College, Dr. Khoury’s has also held positions at Paul Smith’s College, Culver Stockton College, Upper Iowa University, and Unity College. Prior to joining the world of academia, Dr. Khoury was an international business executive, serving as Director of Euro-Gambian Trading (E.G.T.). He received a Doctorate in Business Administration from the University of Phoenix, a Master of Business Administration from the University of Maine, and his Baccalaureate from University of Maine Fort Kent.
  • Hon. Nick Isgro
    Nick Isgro is the mayor of the City of Waterville, where he is a lifelong resident and lives with his wife and 5 children in the home that his grandfather built in 1960. Nick is also Controller at Skowhegan Savings Bank and is a board member and financial advisor for St. Theresa’s Catholic Church in Oakland.
  • Sean Ingram
    An Alabama native, Sean Ingram currently works for the Governor of Maine as a legislative policy coordinator. He formerly served Governor LePage in the office of Boards and Commission, an office responsible for recruiting and placing thousands of volunteer board and commission members for gubernatorial appointment.

Maine Schools Update: Required Reporting Open 5/1 – 6/15

The NEO Maine Schools Update form is required by all public school units and private schools to inform the Maine Department of Education of school and district contact information, changes in grade spans, and other SAU and school related information.

Changes:

  • Report will open May 1 and close June 15
  • Update any information for the District. All fields with the exception of Administrative Office Fax are required. PO Boxes will not be accepted in the “Physical Address” box. Mailing address is needed only if different from Physical address. Check the box to confirm that all SAU information has been reviewed before moving on to individual schools information.
  • The Cost Center information that has been added to Maine Schools references the three digit code that the business office uses in the financial system to assign building level costs. Each building will have at least one Cost Center, but may have two codes if the building has a combination of PreK-8 grade students and 9-12 grade students. PreK-8 grade will have a range of 010 through 290, and 9-12 grades will have a code in the range of 300 through 380. CTE Centers will have a Cost Center of 390. If school districts operate an alternative education program where they need to enter the building those will use a cost center in the range of 500 through 590. The cost center report can be downloaded here: http://www.maine.gov/education/data/handbook/codereport.htm
  • Student information system – enter the system you use to upload data to the state.  **This is important ** we need your correct SIS vendor information for training and communication with the vendor**
  • If a school offers All-day K or Alternative Education, please indicate.

To log in:  https://neo.maine.gov/DOE/neo

Click on Maine Schools (if you do not see this option on your menu, and are a superintendent, technical coordinator, or administrative assistant, please contact the MEDMS Helpdesk at MEDMS.Helpdesk@maine.gov or 207-624-6896.

PYDI Conference – Creating Positive Climates for Youth scheduled for June 29-30

The Maine Event: Creating Positive Climates for Youth conference will be held June 29-30 at Holiday Inn by the Bay in Portland. This year’s event combines the annual conferences of the Positive Youth Development Institute and the Collaboration for Perpetual Innovation into a single gathering of youth serving professionals and volunteers. With a long history of support and involvement from the Maine Department of Education, the event draws a strong following with presenters and participants from as many as seventeen states, Canada, and Scotland by providing training and information about key components to positive climate in all settings in which children and youth gather.

For educators, the conference supports many initiatives within the Maine Department of Education related to positive school culture/climate, brain-based practices for student engagement, and encouraging school-wide practices of inclusion for all students.

 For more information including a list of this year’s topics and registration information, visit the Maine Event: Creating Positive Climates for Youth conference website.

 For questions related to the conference, contact Donna Duffey, Conference Manager at 800-294-4322 or duffey.donna47@gmail.com or Maine Department of Education specialist Sarah Ricker at 624-6685, or sarah.ricker@maine.gov.

 

The State of Maine is implementing a new grant management system for all State Agencies

The State of Maine is implementing a new grant management system for all State Agencies.

For the Department of Education, the new grant management system will replace the GEM system currently used to apply for education grants and manage invoicing against those grants.

Phase I of the project includes the following programs using the new grant management system for the FY 18 grant cycle beginning on 6/1/17.

  • Local Entitlement
  • Career and Technical Education

Phase II of the project includes the following programs using the new grant management system for the FY 18 grant cycle beginning on 9/1/17.

  • Title IA
  • Title ID
  • Title IIA
  • Title III
  • Title V (previously Title VI)

Additional Education grant programs below will begin using the new grant management system when the new grant cycle begins for that program. This will vary depending on the grant.

  • Adult Education
  • Assessment
  • McKinney Vento
  • Migrant Education
  • Pre K
  • Sexual Health
  • 21st Century Community Learning Centers

The Department will provide ongoing communication to update School Administrative Units of training dates and other important information.

Please contact Denise Towers at 624-6863 or Denise.Towers@Maine.gov if you have any questions.

PRESS RELEASE: Maine student artwork selected for screensaver challenge

Twenty Maine student artists will have an audience of more than 70,000 students and educators for their artwork starting this fall.

More than 200 students submitted images to be considered for the Maine Department of Education (DOE), Maine Learning Technology Initiative (MLTI) Screensaver Challenge.

An annual tradition of the Maine DOE, students in grades K-12 can submit artwork at the beginning of the year to be selected for display. The images are scored and selected by an independent panel of three judges.

The winning student artists will have their work showcased on MLTI devices for the 2017-18 school year. In addition, the student artists will have their registration fees waived for the 2017 MLTI Student Conference, and their winning pieces will be printed and displayed at the Department of Education’s Augusta offices from June 1 – August 31, 2017.

The selected students are listed below. Their artwork is available for viewing on the Maine DOE Website.

  • Griffin Vulture, Anna Labbe, Grade 10, Freeport High School
  • Abstract Ocean Life, Elizabeth Young, Grade 9, Freeport High School
  • Duck at Dawn, Bennett Hight, Grade 12, Freeport High School
  • Fallen Leaves, Zoe Fox, Grade 12, Freeport High School
  • Lights of the City, Griffin Agnese, Grade 11, Freeport High School
  • House Barn, Julian Lindholm Fiske, Grade 12, George Stevens Academy
  • Beneath the Surface, Corinne Ahearn, Grade 9, Greely High School
  • Eel Life, Maddie Hall, Grade 8, Greely Middle School
  • Knot a View, Alexis Merchant, Grade 10, Jonesport-Beals High School
  • Seeing Through, Emily Segal, Grade 7, Lincoln Middle School
  • Dandelion, Ana Rogers, Grade 9, Mount Desert Island HS
  • Scraffito, Erin Corcoran, Grade 8, Oceanside Middle School
  • Dream, Zabina Zimmerman, Grade 1, Pond Cove Elementary School
  • Bikes, Megan Gordon, Grade 11, Camden Hills Regional High School
  • Children’s Space, Corilie Green, Grade 10, Freeport High School
  • Wolf, Grace Neal, Grade 11, George Stevens Academy
  • Hummingbird, Toni MacDonald, Grade 12, Houlton Middle/High School
  • Moose, Blair Tweed, Grade 11, Wells High School
  • Lost and Forgotten, Samuel Livingston, Grade 12, Wells High School
  • Umbrella, Lauren Dow, Grade 10, Wells High School

For more information about the Maine Learning Technology Initiative Screen Saver challenge visit: http://maine.gov/doe/mlti/student/artchallenge/index.html

2017 ESL Summer Retreat

The 2017 ESL Summer Retreat is open for registration. The retreat is scheduled for June 26th, 27th and 28th at the University of Maine in Orono. Superintendents, principals, district level administrators and ESL coordinators and teachers are encouraged to register for the retreat. Developed in collaboration with the University of Maine Project Reach, this year’s retreat’s agenda is linked below, highlights include:

  • Presenter Dr. Jessica Costa, nationally recognized professional development senior outreach specialist for WIDA.
  • Panel of Expert consisting of Superintendent(s), Assistant Superintendent(s), ELL Coordinator(s), Principal(s) and more to hold open discussion on best practices for enhancing collaborative structures and relationships to build quality language programs.

Retreat Information:

  • ESL Summer 2017 Registration » $125 – Full 3-day conference fee (includes on-campus housing). $100 – Full 3-day conference fee (does not include housing). Registration includes meals and materials.
  • ESL Summer Retreat webpage – additional updated information including retreat materials will be posted as they become available.

For more information about the conference, please contact Nancy Mullins at 624-6788 or nancy.mullins@maine.gov.

Maine DOE Partnering with UMFK to Expand AP4ALL Program

The Maine Department of Education (DOE) and the University of Maine at Fort Kent (UMFK) are pleased to announce a partnership for the statewide AP4ALL program.

In its tenth year running, the AP4ALL program has become increasingly popular among high school students throughout the state by offering the opportunity to take Advanced Placement (AP) courses, completely online, regardless of where they live or their school’s ability to support AP courses.

With experience and resources from their own Rural U early college program, UMFK will be administering all of the AP4ALL courses for the 2017/2018 and 2018/2019 school years. The shift will help to improve the quality and outcomes of the program by offering students additional resources including new course software and management platforms, as well as digital texts and other classroom materials. In addition, the partnership will allow for expanded class sizes for popular courses, improved retention rates, and increased opportunity to reach rural students.

In order for this first year to be successful, information was reviewed from prior years to help create a list of course offerings that will better serve students. While the number of different courses offered has decreased, more spots have been created for courses that students previously wanted but couldn’t get into due to class size limits. The list was created based on many criteria, some of which included: course availability and need across Maine, prior enrollment, current retention and success rates for students, and the ability to transfer credits, subject knowledge, and skills into future higher education opportunities.

See the full listing of 2017/2018 courses on UMFK’s website.

In the first year of the pilot partnership, the previously available dual enrollment opportunities will be put on hold to ensure a smooth transition with available resources. Students interested in other early college opportunities can visit Maine DOE’s website to see a listing of other programs that are being offered around the state.

As the partnership grows, steps will be taken to continually evaluate the program in order to ensure the success of online learning, and to assess the quality of the programming. The evaluation will not only facilitate the growth of the AP4ALL program, but will also provide information that will help inform changes and decision making about AP courses and online learning more generally.

For questions or more information, contact Amanda Nguyen, Digital Learning Specialist for Maine Department of Education at 207-624-6656 or amanda.nguyen@maine.gov.

Spring ESEA Training and Updates for ESEA Coordinators, Title Administrators and Private Schools

The Maine DOE will be providing training for Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) Coordinators and individual Title administrators who manage Federal ESEA programs and funds with responsibilities for the ESEA Consolidated Application and Performance Report. Business managers are welcome to attend.

The training day will focus on changes to Title programs and private school equitable services as a result of the implementation of Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and changes to the annual ESEA Consolidated application for funding.

The training will include:

  • Introductory program overview for each ESEA Title contained within the ESEA Consolidated Application and Performance Report
  • Guidance regarding project construction and the development of measurable outcomes
  • Allowable costs
  • Fiscal compliance
  • Private school consultation and equitable service requirements; and
  • Important reporting dates.

Tentative agenda:

8:30                      Check In – (Refreshments unavailable)

9:00                      ESEA Program Updates with Q & A

12 noon               Working Lunch (Provided with the exception of the Augusta location)

1:00                      Annual ESEA Consolidated application overview with Q & A

3:00                      Adjourn

There will be four (4) opportunities to attend the training. Please register for only one (1) date.

May 3, 2017       Jeff’s Catering, 15 Littlefield Rd, Brewer

May 4, 2017       Hampton Inn, 768 Main Street Presque Isle

May 17, 2017    Best Western Merry Manor Inn, 700 Main Street, South Portland

May 18, 2017    Augusta Armory, 179 Western Avenue, Augusta

REGISTRATION

Please register by clicking the following link: https://goo.gl/forms/Y52sIS0xUJtIUEh02  Registrations must be received by April 28, 2017

Additional questions regarding the training should be directed to Eric Buckhalter at Eric.Buckhalter@maine.gov or (207) 624- 6770.

PreK Grant Opportunity Funding for New PreK Programs

The Maine Department of Education (DOE) has a limited funding opportunity for School Administrative Units (SAU) interested in establishing a new PreK program in 2017-18. The Maine DOE has funding for up to five PreK Grants ranging from $22,000 to $52,000 a classroom. The purpose of the PreK grant is to expand high-quality PreK to children from families with moderate incomes.

The PreK Grant funding is not intended to fully fund the PreK program; there is a requirement for all subgrantees to provide at least a 60% local match to the federal funds. The grant’s funding level, combined with the SAUs local contribution, will ensure high quality PreK program standards and grant expectations are met and that the PreK program is sustainable after the grant closeout in December 2018. The PreK grants awarded in 2017-18 will continue, contingent on federal funding, through December 2018. This funding opportunity is part of the Maine DOE’s PreK Expansion Grant received in 2015. The grant’s absolute priority is to expand access to high-quality PreK to children with mid-range or lower incomes.

In grant year 1, the 2017-18 school year, the PreK grant could fund materials, equipment, furnishings and a portion of one year of operation of a pre-K program. SAUs must provide supplemental funding of 60% match. In grant year 2, 2018-19, funding will be provided through December 2018 and can cover a portion of the SAUs PreK program operating expenses.

Basic Requirements:

  • The PreK grant funds can be used to aid SAUs in starting a new PreK Program.
  • SAUs applying for grant funding must have at least a 50% district-wide free/reduced (F/R) lunch rate. FRL is 185% of Federal Poverty Level.
  • Priority enrollment must be given to children from families at 200% Federal Poverty Level and below.
  • The proposed PreK program must meet all public PreK program standards as required by the Maine Department of Education rules, Code of Maine Regulations (05-071 CMR Chapter.124.) Maine DOE Chapter 124.
  • SAUs must match federal funds – minimum of 60%.
  • Provide full day programming – 6 hours daily
  • Comprehensive Services offered to all families
  • Administer Kindergarten Entry Assessment as directed by Maine DOE’s PreK Grant.
  • Funding level a maximum $4,500 per eligible child + targeted funds for grant requirements. Only eligible children can be funded

The application deadline is April 30, 2017. PreK grant awards will be made by May 12, 2017.

For more information, contact Maine DOE PreK grant manager, Deb Lajoie at Deborah.j.Lajoie@maine.gov or call 207-624-6613

Maine DOE Reporting Calendar replaced by new Data, Collections & Reporting (DC&R) System

As a reminder, as of April 1st the Maine Department of Education has officially replaced the Maine DOE Reporting Calendar with the Data, Collections & Reporting (DC&R) DC&R calendar in NEO.  This module will be a one-stop shop for all organizations to go to see what report is required and when, and to get the most up to date version of a form.

Maine DOE Staff have been submitting reports to be loaded to the module with information on when the report is due, instructions and links for completing the reports, as well as contact information from within the Department.  Districts and the public can now see reports that are due and past due, if applicable.  There is an indicator as to whether or not submitting the report has an impact on funding as well as a tab for “As Needed” reports, such as IEP forms, etc. where districts can have access to the most up to date forms they need in one place.  The Helpdesk is currently in process of loading all Department reports.  Going forward, Districts will only be required to complete reports that are in DC&R.

 For more information contact the Data Systems Helpdesk at (207) 624-6896 or medms.helpdesk@maine.gov.