EPS High-Cost Out-of-District Report (EF-S-214) Open for Reporting on March 1, 2019; Deadline is April 15, 2019

The EF-S-214, also known as the EPS High-Cost Out-of-District Report will be open for data entry to Maine public schools on March 1 in the Maine DOE’s NEO Portal.

The report can be located by logging into NEO at: https://neo.maine.gov/DOE/NEO/Accounts/Account/Login then Navigate to→ Special Education → Forms → EFS-214.

School districts should sign into the report as early as possible to allow time for data entry as well as the two-step submission process. The deadline to complete the report is April 15. The Department must approve the report by April 15 to allow time to make possible EPS adjustments.

This report is required for all publicly funded school districts, including districts that do not meet the High-Cost Out-of-District tuition threshold of $16,214 (see further details below).

Below are a few important things to note about the EF-S-214 report:

  • School districts will need to project the tuition cost for the full fiscal year.
  • Fiscal Year 2019 tuition/board cost that total above $16,214 for each student should be included in the report. 
  • Adjustments to the Special Education High-Cost Out-of-District allocation will be based on costs above $16,214 for placements in Regional Special Education Programs, $24,321 for placements in other school administrative units, and $32,428 for placements in private schools.


Questions about the report should be direct to Stephanie Clark (Fiscal Compliance Specialist) for the Maine Department of Education at 207-624-6807 or (Stephanie.clark@maine.gov).

Administrative Letter: Clarification Concerning Least Restrictive Environment (LRE)

Administrative Letter: #22
Policy Code: BGE
To: Public School Administrators, Special Ed. Directors
From: A. Pender Makin, Acting Commissioner
Date: January 31, 2019
Subject: Clarification Concerning Least Restrictive Environment (LRE)

To assist and support school districts in their diligent work to document student Individual Education Plans (IEP), Maine Department of Education is providing clarification concerning least restrictive environment (LRE) and the calculation of the percentage of time that a child is with non-disabled peers (Section 9 of the IEP).

The information in this letter is our best guidance. It has been reviewed by our legal team in the Office of the Attorney General and has been confirmed by the federal Office of Special Education Programs.

Least Restrictive Environment (LRE)

The time during which a child receives instruction within the regular education setting is to be considered as non-special education time in the LRE calculation.  The physical location of the child’s program dictates the regular education setting calculation regardless of the type of instruction he or she may be receiving (special or regular education).  If the child is receiving special education services outside of the regular education setting, that amount of time should continue to be considered as time away from non-disabled children.

Further questions may be directed to the Maine Department of Education’s Office of Special Services at 207-624-6713.

Due Process Procedure Update

The Office of Special Services would like to inform school districts and parents that the Due Process Office has a new email address specific to special education due process issues. Requests for Mediations, State Complaint Investigations, and Requests for Hearings should be submitted to dueprocess.DOE@maine.gov and mailed to

The Office of Special Services, Due Process
Maine DOE, 23 State House Station
Augusta, ME 04333-0023.

Please submit any new requests to this email address. The telephone number for information about due process procedures remains 624-6644. For further questions, please contact Ann Belanger, Deputy Director, Office of Special Services, her email is Ann.Belanger@maine.gov.

MaineCare Seed Adjustments to be Made; Review Q119 Reports by January 18, 2019

The recovery of Q119 MaineCare Seed will occur in the January 2019 subsidy payment and the Maine DOE is asking School Administrative Units (SAUs) to review their reports by January 18, 2019 to ensure accurate adjustments to subsidy. SAU staff must review student by student claims on both the public and private MaineCare reports for Q119 by January 18, 2019.

To access the MaineCare Seed reports, please follow the instructions below.

  1. Log into NEO
    As in the past, if a new staff member needs permission to access this module, a request from the Superintendent to the Maine DOE helpdesk will be necessary. The helpdesk contact information is medms.helpdesk@maine.gov or 207-624-6896. Anyone who currently has Special Education Director permissions to the Special Education module, will automatically have permissions to access MaineCare reports.
  2. Click on the Student Data tab
  3. Click on the Student Report tab
  4. Select MaineCare in the Reporting Area drop-down
  5. Choose the quarterly Seed report and the report type (private/public)
  6. Click view report button
  7. Once the report appears on the screen, choose the export button.

    Export Button
  8. You may export the reports to Excel but, please be aware that there may be multiple worksheet tabs within the workbook. Save the file to your computer.

If you disagree that a particular student or time period should be on the report, please provide the reason that you disagree along with the following to Denise.towers@maine.gov.

  • Identify the type of report (public or private) and the quarter in which the claims are located.
  • State Student ID
  • Service provided dates (to and from)
  • Total amount of Seed being disputed

Summer services: Students must be enrolled for the time period they are receiving educational services. This means that students that are receiving extended school year services in district or extended school year services in an out of district placement must have a primary enrollment for that time period in order for the MDOE to have the most accurate enrollment data to determine SAU responsibility for MaineCare Seed.

For more information or technical assistance related to MaineCare Seed, please contact Denise.towers@maine.gov.


Maine DOE Offers Two Opportunities to Participate in a 1% Alternate Assessment Support Webinar

Letters were sent out Friday, December 21st to all districts that have identified more than 1% of their students as alternate assessment students.  Three levels of support are offered to all districts.  Districts assigned to a level of support in Tier 2 and Tier 3 are required to attend one of the 1% Support Webinars listed below.  All other districts are welcome to attend.

The webinar will include an overview of the 1% ESSA regulation – Section §1111(b)(2)(D)(I) for providing alternate assessments, including: the definition of significant cognitive disabilities, meeting the criteria within the Participation Guidelines, how to identify students in Synergy, and how to complete the Action Plan for districts over the 1% participation threshold. Concentration on the Action Plan will look at three levels of support and what that means to districts, how to provide justifications, and a look at disproportionality.

Please contact Sue Nay at sue.nay@maine.gov or Ann Belanger at ann.belanger@maine.gov  with questions.