March 21, 2001
Honorable J. Duke Albanese
Commissioner of Education
Department of Education
23 State House Station
Augusta, Maine 04333-0023
Dear Commissioner Albanese:
This is a follow up to your letter concerning Maine's actions to meet the Title I requirements of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. I appreciate your cooperation in making the changes in your assessment system that were necessary to meet the requirements of Section 1111(b)(3) and 1116(a) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act.
The information provided by your office confirms that you have already taken the necessary action to develop and publicly disseminate fully disaggregated state, district, and school level performance reports. The explanation for the indicators that Maine will use to identify economically disadvantaged students are appropriate and meet the Title I requirements.
We understand that it will take some time to complete your plans for increasing the participation of limited English proficient students in the assessment system. In addition, your plan to fully implement the alternate assessment following a field test this year will go beyond the 2000-2001 test administration deadline for Title I. Because these plans will take additional time, I agree to grant a one-year waiver of the timeline for completion of Maine's final assessment system. Full approval will be extended upon completion of the above actions as described in your December 14, 2000 letter to Mary Jean LeTendre.
Please provide evidence of completion to the Department's Title I office by December 31, 2001. This evidence may take the form of guidance to local districts, sample reports, or other documents that demonstrate the changes that have been made. To obtain interim documentation of your progress, a Title I staff member will contact Brud Maxcy later this year.
I am confident that Maine will continue to advance state and local education improvement efforts, to improve student achievement, and to maintain strong accountability for results. We wish you well in your efforts to improve school and student performance in your state.
Thomas M. Corwin
Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary