“A breath of fresh air!”

It may be mid-winter, but this is definitely the phrase of the past few weeks!

By the time you see this, Maine will have a new Commissioner of Education, Pender Makin.The testimony in support of her confirmation was inspiring and uplifting. Many remarked that her outlook on public education brought “a breath of fresh air”.

The MEA Board of Directors engaged in rich discussions on a variety of topics at this month’s meeting.

Board of Directors

The 129th legislature is in full swing, and bills are coming up for hearings rapidly! Thank you to all who have already attended hearings and/or submitted testimony! PLEASE sign up to receive the updates from our Government Relations Director.

We continue to hear about our members who are impacted by the Government Pension Offset and/or the Windfall Elimination Provision (GPO/WEP).

Educational Support Professionals—looking for a better understanding about retirement? Call in to the ESP Tele-Townhall on February 13th.

If you’ve ever wondered what benefits you may expect in retirement, or how taking a different job assignment might affect your retirement benefits, call 1-719-325-2776 in at 7:00 on February 13th. Use access code 196546 to join in.

And everyone, please contact Congress about the National ESP Award!

Interested in TEACHER LEADERSHIP? Join others in helping to develop teacher leadership in Maine.

A group of dedicated individuals is working to promote and develop opportunities for teacher leadership development. Join them! Read more and get contact information at

Looking for STEM stories! Do you know of one?

If you or a colleague knows of a great story about what is going on with STEM in our schools, please send the details along to MEA Communications Director.


MEA always wants to know what its members think so as an Association we can best meet your needs. Please take a few minutes and share your thoughts with MEA!


The books” are on their way to first graders!

Many thanks to the members and to the staff that are helping with this effort. Please be patient—we will get them to you! Be on the lookout! And thanks again to Past President Lois Kilby-Chesley for having secured the funding from grants that has made this possible!

Attn: Local Presidents, MEA Elections Update
Local Association Presidents should keep their eyes on their mailboxes for ballots for various MEA elections!

And remember that nominations for MEA Awards are due March 7th!

Let’s recognize our outstanding educators and friends of education! For information and nomination forms, go to https://maineea.org/award-grants/

FYI—the MLK Jr. Day Breakfast on the UMO campus was postponed due to weather, but has now been rescheduled.

Are you passionate about EQUITY in your school? Here is free access to the docu-series, “America to Me”.

Teachers Against Child Detention is an organization that is speaking out about the harmful effects of family separation and detention.

Educators are taking part in a variety of activities regarding this situation. FMI go to https://www.teachersagainstchilddetention.org/

From Maine Association for the Education of Young Children, here is information about a conference called Teaching Kindergarten: Where Did the Garden Go?

It is in New York City, but there is also an online option. Here is the link to the event: https://graduate.bankstreet.edu/educator-resources/conferences-institutes/kindergarten-conference/


Tax season is here and NEA Member Benefits has help for you!

Go to NEA Member Benefits for discounts on tax preparation services at H & R block: https://www.neamb.com/products/hr-block-tax-preparationAnd remember that there are several changes to deductions for 2018 taxes.

Have you checked out the many programs for members from Horace Mann?


MEA members continue to shine, receiving national awards and giving back to their communities.

As February break draws near for many of you, remember how important self-care is! So many of us are focused on the effects of trauma on our students, we don’t stop to think about how dealing with students who have experienced trauma also impacts us.

Last but not least, please check with your colleagues to see if they are getting this and other communications from MEA! If they are not, ask them to check their spam/junk mail or promotions folders—we are finding that some messages are showing up there!