Stronger Together for Maine Education

How crisis has led to a growing community of educators in Maine.

by Megan Leach, Communications and Content Coordinator for Rural Aspirations Project

Rapid response has become a recurring theme during the COVID-19 pandemic and the Community Learning for ME (CL4ME) platform is no exception.   Korah Soll, founding director of Rural Aspirations Project, responded to the sudden lack of access to in-person education for educators and the new position that parents and caregivers found themselves in, by assembling a team of educators to create the website Community Learning for ME in a matter of weeks. 

CL4ME launched in April with just over 15 organizations and a handful of live sessions and anytime resources for educators and parents.  It has since become a professionally maintained website with over 100 organizations sharing countless resources to educators and parents. While the site actively curates a wide variety of amazing resources the team is in a position to connect, collaborate and listen to the needs of education stakeholders across the state.  In June we held a virtual meeting focused on understanding the summer PD needs for educators.  As we continued to scan and listen, we recognized the time to act and quickly created 1 Plan: 3 Falls, a virtual conference, to help to meet the needs of Maine’s educators

1 Plan: 3 Falls was a whirlwind of planning that led to three days of morning and afternoon sessions filled with a wide selection of two-hour virtual workshops to attend, keynote speakers to start off each day. Over 20 organizations and Maine educators came together to offer over 30 workshops and presentations which had over 400 registrations!  The biggest success of the three-day virtual conference was the connections formed between Maine organizations and Maine educators working with students throughout the state.  We’ve received positive and constructive feedback from participants and presenters alike with requests coming in for more live sessions and another potential conference this coming later this fall.  Here are a few takeaways from the conference:


The future holds exciting new ideas for education

Teachers are looking forward to the future and the changes they see happening in education.  



Teachers need responsive professional development for the changes happening in education

To meet the needs of virtual and socially distanced education, educators are looking for training and support.

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Maine needs a strong community for strong education

Maine has a wide array of businesses, institutions, organizations, and professionals that are ready and willing to build a strong support network for educators.  Community Learning for ME is excited to continue building this community with Maine specific opportunities and resources.

The 1 Plan:3 Falls conference and collaborations that have strengthened and formed over the past few months showcase the power of community needed to educate Maine’s youth. Community Learning for ME is a collaboration between Maine organizations, research institutions, educators and parents.  This is a collbaration that emphasizes local talent, resources and connections.  It connects Maine students to amazing learning opportunities and supports Maine educators in their needs.  A collaboration that is sustainable for educators, families, and students who are beginning a new school with many known and unknown challenges ahead. CL4ME will continue to respond to the needs as they arise and to build a well connected and collaborative space for education.  Please reach out to us so that we can connect you to resources in Maine.  Where better to get your educational resources than our own backyard?


All that being said, is there anything you need?