Call for Student and Educator Team Proposals: MLTI Student Conference

The MLTI Student Conference Planning Committee is issuing the call for student and educator team proposals for the 17th Annual MLTI Student Conference, to be held on Thursday, May 21, 2020 at the University of Maine in Orono.

Two important notes:

  1. Proposals are due much earlier this year! This will allow us to have a session list finalized by the time conference registration opens.
  2. Ideally, all proposals will have some form of student leadership incorporated. This could mean students will lead the whole session (with some adult support), students will serve as guides/coaches during the activity portion, or something in between. Students can co-present with teachers or other educators (including from community or business organizations).

Sessions will be one-hour long, must involve some form of creating, making, and doing, and should leave participants excited about what they learned and eager to share their experiences with others.

You can view examples of sessions from the 2019 MLTI Student Conference here.

Here’s the information you need to submit a proposal:

Conference Theme:  Maine’s Bicentennial Celebration

Possible Topics:  Proposals are not limited to the conference theme, and might include topics such as music, spoken word recording, coding, video production, graphic design, or writing and publishing your collection of short stories.

Device Requirements:  The student conference supports all MLTI devices, regardless of platform and encourages “platform-agnostic” sessions.

A Proposal Submission must include:

  1. The name of your school
  2. The title of your session
  3. List of all presenters

Important notes:

  • The $18 registration cost will be waived for up to two presenters. If you choose to have more presenters, you will need to pay the registration fee. Note that the Department has made every effort over the years to keep the cost of the conference low, however, as costs continue to rise, we have increased the registration fee by $3 this year and will raise it by $4 next year.
  • If your proposal is accepted, we ask that you register all presenters in a timely manner. The presenters do not count toward the school limit of 40 students during the registration process.
  1. A description of your session:
    • What skill will participants learn? How will you teach this?
    • What activity will participants engage in – what will they create?
    • What can participants expect to walk away knowing and being able to do?
  2. Materials to share in the conference registration form:
    • Short video advertisement of the session (less than a minute) Please submit Media Release forms for any student in the video.
    • Short description of the session (less than 200 words)
  1. Student leadership information:
    • How will student leaders be incorporated into the session?
    • How will they be empowered to succeed during preparation and during the day of the conference?
  2. Session requirements:
    • Level of expertise needed to participate fully (beginner, intermediate, expert)
    • The maximum number of participants you can accommodate (room sizes vary from 30-200)
    • Space set up requests (auditorium, tables/chairs, projector, speakers, etc.)
  3. Technology requirements:
    • A list of which platforms can be used in the session: (MacBook, iPad, ProBook, ElitePad, Chromebook, other)
    • Software and materials participants must have to participate (be specific)
  4. The name of the educator to be contacted about this proposal, and their email and phone number

Submit Proposals by 5 pm, Tuesday, January 7th, 2020 to this online form or copy and paste this URL into your browser It is recommended that you type your answers in a separate document and then copy them into the form, so you can be sure to save your work.

Important Dates

  • Monday, November 4th, 2019 – Call for Proposals open and theme announced
  • Tuesday, January 7th, 2020 – Proposals due
  • Monday, January 13th, 2020 – Sessions selected
  • Friday, January 17th, 2020 – Sessions confirmed by presenters
  • Monday, January 27th, 2020 – Sessions posted on DOE website
  • March 2nd, 2020: Registration open

Spread the word – if you know of someone doing fantastic work involving technology with making, doing, or storytelling please encourage them to submit a proposal or send an email with suggestions to!

For more information or answers to questions, please visit the MLTI Student Conference page or contact the MLTI Student Conference Planning Committee at

“Harvest of Ideas” Brings Together 600 Washington County Educators for Unique Learning Opportunity

The Washington County Consortium, a non-profit collaborative organization formed by school districts in Washington County to provide regional professional development opportunities, recently held its annual “Harvest of Ideas,” a day-long conference featuring workshops focused on high impact practices, academic and behavioral interventions, relevant resources, and research-based practices.

Held at the University of Maine at Machias, the event drew over 600 educators from the Washington County region and offered a wide range of learning opportunities, some of which will be followed up with two additional half-day workshops held throughout the school year, led by conference presenters. Uniquely this year, the conference allowed for 150-minute sessions called learning communities, providing practitioners time and space to think about what the ideas look like in their schools and classrooms, and how and where to start.

Sarah Woog introducing Commissioner Makin who participated via web conferencing to address educators.
Sarah Woog introducing Commissioner Makin who participated via web conferencing to address educators.

Sarah Woog, Executive Director for the Washington County Consortium and the coordinator of conference opened both morning and afternoon auditorium sessions by thanking the many people involved in pulling off such a comprehensive learning opportunity. “Thank you to all who helped put this day together, to the Washington County Leadership Team, the Washington County Consortium Board of Directors, everyone at UMM, from IT to facilities, to the instructors who are sharing in sessions today.” She also gave an important shout out to Culinary Arts Instructor Emily Fitzsimmons from Coastal Washington County Institute of Technology and her students from Machias Memorial High School who provided lunch and snacks that day, in addition to students from Washington Academy, who served as ambassadors for the day.

Representatives from the Maine Department of Education were present, including Emily Gribben who assisted with coordination, Lavinia Rogers who offered a collaborative work session for World Language teachers, and Shari Templeton with an interactive session for science teachers. Maine DOE Coach Darlene Bassett was also present working with Maine educators to host a workshop on Guided Reading. With the help of Woog and Maine DOE representative Mary Herman, Commissioner Makin also joined the conference virtually in two different larger sessions to offer educators her thoughts on teacher voice and its impact on spreading a positive message about education in Maine.

Also featured was a long session about integrating Maine Native American studies into classroom instruction. Geo Neptune, a member of the Passamaquoddy Tribe from Indian Township, hosted the presentation. As an educator, Passamaquoddy activist, and master basket maker, Neptune was able to provide conference participants with valuable and unique first-hand perspective, advice, and tools to aid them in finding resources to teach Native American studies in ways that are contemporary and relevant, while also honoring the long history and culture of Maine’s Native American tribes. As an Educator, Geo has worked not only within Wabanaki communities toward cultural preservation, but statewide within Maine schools to help provide content.

Other sessions focused on a wide variety of pertinent topics including leadership, literacy assessment, engaging students with technology, guided reading, school counseling, Adverse Childhood Experiences, Neurodiversity, and selfcare and mindfulness to name a few. Presenters included several experts in the field including representatives from Maine Principals Association, CAN (Child Abuse and Neglect) Prevention Council of Washington County, University of Maine at Machias, Maine Parent Federation, and TREE (Transforming Rural Experience in Education), in addition to Maine educators from the region speaking to their peers as leading experts in their innovative work in education.

The day was a success on all counts providing educators from the Washington County Region with information and tools to refresh their classroom practices and help with the difficult task of ensuring students in some of the most rural areas of Maine have access to cutting edge curriculum, programming, and resources to help them achieve in today’s world.

“Every year, I just hope to do something that is more meaningful and has a greater impact than the year before,” said Woog. “I am grateful for the numerous people who work with me each year to realize this goal.”

Maine DOE Update – November 1, 2019

From the Maine Department of Education

Reporting Items


We are thrilled to share that 74% of our SAUs made the October 31 deadline, and have their student data submitted! This helps all of us, as it impacts the accuracy and timeliness of the ED 279.We appreciate that SAUs have been working diligently to ensure the accuracy of their staff data prior to submitting; we are still waiting to receive about 50% of SAU staffing data currently.| More

| Visit the DC&R Reporting Calendar |

News & Updates

Public Comment Period for Alternative Science Waiver Application Now Open

The Maine Department of Education (DOE) is seeking 30 days of public comment from October 31 – November 29, 2019, on a waiver application (waiver from §8401(b) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) as amended by the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) of 2015) to the U.S. Department of Education (USED). The request seeks a waiver from publicly reporting student alternate science test data from the Spring 2020 assessment administration. | More

MAARS Workshop and Overview of Approved Changes to Maine’s Model of School Support

Online Registration Portal for 2019 MAARS Workshop, including an overview of key changes to Maine’s Model of School Support (Accountability) is now available. | More

School Bus Purchase Program Applications Open November 1

The Maine Department of Education is accepting applications to receive subsidy for new school buses purchased through the School Bus Purchase Program. The application period is November 1 through November 25, 2019.| More

Maine Teacher Surprised with $25,000 Milken Educator Award

“Let’s go to the video” isn’t just something they say on the nightly news in Gorham, Maine. It’s also the go-to skill for student storytellers at Gorham High School, thanks to the pervasive and forward-looking influence of technology teacher Adam Parvanta. A tech mentor for grade 9 through 12 students as well as staff, Parvanta puts technology in student hands and teaches them how to craft stories large and small. Whether it’s augmenting class projects, highlighting student activities or helping students create visual résumé boosters to supplement their college applications, Parvanta deploys technology in ways that spur students to become creators of content rather than just passive consumers. | More

Maine DOE Reviews Student Cabinet Applications

The Maine Department of Education would like to thank each and every one of the hundreds of students in grades 4-13 who applied to be on Maine Department of Education’s Student Cabinet. There has been an amazing outpouring of interest, and we are honored that so many students want to be engaged in education policy and reform at the state level. | More

Maine DOE Hosts First School Vegetable Prep-Culinary Training in Culinary Classroom

Last week, the Maine Department of Education’s Child Nutrition Team hosted its very first hands-on training in the newly built Child Nutrition Culinary Classroom.| More

New FFA Chapter Officers Trained for School Year

State Officers of the Maine FFA Association (formerly known as “Future Farmers of America”) trained 35 leaders from 7 Aroostook County FFA Chapters on October 18, 2019 at the University of Maine, Presque Isle. | More

Get to know the DOE Team: Meet Megan Dichter

Maine DOE team member Megan Dichter is being highlighted this week as the part of a Get to know the DOE Team campaign! Learn a little more about Megan. | More

Maine Schools Sharing Success Stories

| Submit your Maine School Success Story |

Professional Development & Training Opportunities

Count ME In Fall 2019 NEW Training: Transforming School Climate and Culture

Developing a positive school climate and culture leads to an increase in student attendance, engagement and achievement. | More

| Visit the Professional Development Calendar |

Latest DOE Career/Project Opportunities


Is YOUR data done?

We are thrilled to share that 74% of our SAUs made the October 31 deadline, and have their student data submitted!  This helps all of us, as it impacts the accuracy and timeliness of the ED 279.

We appreciate that SAUs have been working diligently to ensure the accuracy of their staff data prior to submitting; we are still waiting to receive about 50% of SAU staffing data currently.  Please be sure to check that your staff information is updated in NEO, and call us if we can help!

Also, the truancy, attendance and behavior data for Quarter 1 is due, and the bullying reporting window is now open through November 30th. As we are looking at model policies and identifying what supports and resources we can provide for schools as they work to ensure a safe school climate, this data is helpful for the conversation.

THANK YOU to all of our SAU staff who have worked so hard to ensure the data is submitted.

And remember, if we can help please, contact our helpdesk at 
or call 207 624-6896.

School Bus Purchase Program Applications Open November 1

The Maine Department of Education is accepting applications to receive subsidy for new school buses purchased through the School Bus Purchase Program.  The application period is November 1 through November 25, 2019.

The Department will be able to approve about $9 million in school bus allocations that combines new bus requests and the prior year bus term commitment.  Round one applications will be accepted.  This program provides subsidy to school administrative units (SAUs) in order to offset partial cost of new school buses that are used to transport students to and from home and school and school events.  This program is a resource to help SAUs purchase new school buses, retire end of life school buses, and respond to emergency and special bus needs.  Eligible vehicles must meet Code of Maine Regulations Chapter 85 minimum qualifications, with the exception of Section 3.1.

The School Bus Purchase Program instructions and application information are available on the Maine DOE’s NEO website dashboard.  For more information or technical assistance, please contact Pat Hinckley at 624-6886 or email .