Maine plan for education improvements unveiled

AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — A report unveiled by Maine's education commissioner says schools need more flexibility to try new methods and place more emphasis on real-life learning experiences.

Steve Bowen
Pat Wellenbach

Stephen Bowen

Commissioner Stephen Bowen on Tuesday presented a report listing shortcomings in Maine's public school system and ways to fix them. It stems from Bowen's statewide tour of nine school districts last year.

The report says Maine's high school graduation rate remains unacceptably low and test-based accountability efforts don't work.

The report says more internships and apprenticeships are needed and students should have more say in planning learning activities and here should be better teacher evaluation systems.

It also proposes more "anytime, anywhere" education, including expanded access to digital learning, and steps that allow students to move at their own pace.

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William Fessenden's picture

Praise for the plan

I congratulate Commission Bowen for his plan and interest in reforming how education is presented in Maine. Mr. Bowen's idea is hardly a new one, but he should be thanked for willing to take initiative and bring it up.

In 1970 Regional Commissioners of education produced a piece titled "Listen To Us", the Sun Journal political animals discussed education reform several months ago-here is a recap

Our current system for delivering education was created with the hope 10% of the students would go on to college & professional careers. Our educators have actually done a wonderful job of accomplishing more than the current system was set up to do.

In RSU4 where I am a member of the school board and a parent of two children, I hope educators/administrator embrace this idea. Parents should be embracing customized learning initiatives.


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