PRIORITY NOTICE: Seeking Public Comment on Health Education and Physical Education, Visual and Performing Arts, and World Languages Standards

As part of the scheduled periodic review of the Maine Learning Results, the Maine Department of Education is seeking public comments regarding the current health education and physical education, visual and performing arts, and world languages standards. Find links to each of the current standards below along with details for submitting comments.

Current Standards:

The standards review process opens with a public comment period and a public hearing, prior to the convening of steering committees who are charged with reviewing all submitted comments and with developing blueprints for the revision of the state standards in their assigned content area. Once the blueprints are created, writing teams, consisting of pk-12 teachers who represent Maine’s cultural and geographical diversity, will assemble to draft the standards revisions.

Anyone may speak at the public hearings, which will be live-streamed. People wishing to speak will be asked to sign in, and it will be helpful, but not mandatory, to provide a written copy of comments.

Public hearings will occur on October 23rd in room 103 at the Cross Building, 111 Sewell Street, Augusta, from 1-4pm. A link to the live-streamed hearings will be available prior to the public hearing.

Anyone unable to attend the public hearing may send written comments by 5 pm on November 8th, 2019. Written comments may be sent to Standards Review at sis.doe@maine.gov, or mailed to Beth Lambert, 23 SHS Station, Augusta, ME 04333.

PRIORITY NOTICE: Proposed Revisions for Rule Chapter 180 (Educator Effectiveness Rules); Hearing on October 28, 2019

The Department is proposing revisions to Rule Chapter 180: Performance Evaluation and Professional Growth Systems to reflect recent statutory changes and feedback from conceptual conversations.

This proposed rulemaking provides a sunset for Section 7, Student Learning and Growth Measures, which are no longer a requirement. School administrative units will have flexibility in developing multiple measures on the local level. Section 13, subsection 3 has been revised to reflect, “A majority of the steering committee members must be teachers and must be chosen by the local representative of the applicable collective bargaining unit if the teachers in the school administrative unit are covered by a collective bargaining agreement.” Redundant and unnecessary language has been deleted.

The Department will be developing guidance to be available on the PEPG General Resources web page.

Find the details for proposed changes for Rule Chapter 180 on the Maine DOE Proposed Rule & Rule Changes webpage (proposed rules are listed in order by rule number).

Public Hearing Information for Rule Chapter 180:
October 28, 2019 from 10:00am- 11:30am
Room 500 in the Cross State Office Building, 111 Sewall Street, Augusta, Maine
All are welcome to attend and no RSVP is required.  Anyone unable to attend the public hearing may send written comments.

Comment Period Deadline: November 22, 2019

Comments can be submitted to Jaci Holmes at jaci.holmes@maine.gov

PRIORITY NOTICE: Proposed Revisions for Rule Chapter 40; Hearing on October 28, 2019

The Department is proposing revisions to Rule Chapter 40: Medication Administration in Schools to reflect recent statutory changes.

This rule provides directions to public and private schools approved pursuant to 20-A MRSA §2902 in the administration of medication within schools. It is to assist school administrative units in implementing the provision of the medication statute [20-MRSA §254(5)(A-D)] that provides direction for training of unlicensed school personnel in the administration of medication, requires that students be allowed to carry and self-administer prescribed emergency medications; specifically, asthma inhalers or epinephrine auto-injectors with health care provider approval and school nurse assessment demonstrating competency and authorizes any student who attends public school to possess and use topical sunscreen product while on school property or at a school-sponsored event without a note or prescription from a health care provider if the product is regulated by the federal Food and Drug Administration for over-the-counter use for the purpose of limiting skin damage from ultraviolet radiation. In addition, refinements have been made to the proposed rule related to medications related to the care of students with insulin dependent diabetes.

Find the details for proposed changes for Rule Chapter 40 on the Maine DOE Proposed Rule & Rule Changes webpage (proposed rules are listed in order by rule number).

Public Hearing Information for Rule Chapter 40:
October 28, 2019 from 1:00pm- 2:30pm
Room 500 in the Cross State Office Building, 111 Sewall Street, Augusta, Maine
All are welcome to attend and no RSVP is required.  Anyone unable to attend the public hearing may send written comments.

Comment Period Deadline: November 22, 2019

Comments can be submitted to Jaci Holmes at jaci.holmes@maine.gov

PRIORITY NOTICE: Mandatory Annual Notification of Eligibility for Schoolwide Programs

Updated annual notification of eligibility for schoolwide programs 

Schools that receive federal Title I funds, have poverty rates of at least 40 percent and have approved Title IA Schoolwide Plans are eligible to use their Title I funds – and funds from other sources – to develop “schoolwide programs.”

Schoolwide programs are comprehensive reform strategies, aimed at raising the achievement levels of all students.

To facilitate the inclusion of students with disabilities in schoolwide programs, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and the federal regulations at 34 CFR §300.206(a) allow school administrative units to use a portion of the funds they receive under Part B of IDEA for any fiscal year to fund such schoolwide programs.

SAUs can use those funds, as long as students with disabilities receive the services to which they are entitled under their Individualized Education Programs and that are guaranteed under IDEA.

The amount of Part B funds a school expends for schoolwide programs cannot exceed the amount the SAU has received for that fiscal year, divided by the number of children with disabilities in that unit, multiplied by the number of children with disabilities participating in the schoolwide program.

For more information, contact Maine DOE’s Title I Coordinator Monique Sullivan at monique.sullivan@maine.gov, or Acting Director of Special Services Jan Breton at janice.breton@maine.gov.

 

PRIORITY NOTICE: Notice from Maine Charter School Commission- Public Input for Proposed New Public Charter School

Maine Charter School Commission Banner

The Maine Charter School Commission has received applications from two entities proposing a new public charter school opening in the fall of 2020. There are 9 public charter schools operating in the state of Maine. Current law allows for a maximum of 10.

Applications were received for:

  • Ecology Learning Center, located in Montville. will serve grades 9-12 with a target population of high school-aged youth seeking experiential, community-based learning. The catchment area of the school will be Waldo County.
  • Sheffwood Academy, located in Topsham, will serve grades 6-12 with a target population of students with a passion for the arts and/or technology. The catchment area of the school will be a 20-mile radius around Topsham.

At its August 6, 2019 Business Meeting, the Maine Charter School Commission determined whether the application(s) appear to demonstrate the applicant’s competence in each element of the Commission’s published approval criteria and appears to demonstrate that the applicant is likely to open and operate a successful public charter school in the state of Maine. The Maine Charter School Commission denied the application for Sheffwood Academy, with no further action recommended. The Maine Charter School Commission has moved the Ecology Learning Center application forward, and a public hearing will be held on August 7th for the Ecology Learning Center from 4:00pm-6:00pm in the Washington/York Room of the Augusta Civic Center.  The purpose of the hearing is to elicit public comment on the expected impact of the proposed charter school on students, parents, the community to be served by the school, and public education in the State. It’s important to note that if a school is approved for a charter, all students in the state of Maine are welcome to enroll.

If you are unable to attend a public hearing in person, written comments will be accepted through 5:00pm on Friday, August 23rd. Written comments can be mailed to the Maine Charter School Commission at 182 State House Station, Augusta, ME 04333 or emailed to mcsc@maine.gov.

Information will be provided on the Commission’s website www.maine.gov/csc.