AUGUSTA — The Maine Department of Education has announced it is opening applications for the 2021-2022 Student Cabinet, a group of students that meet regularly with the Maine DOE to discuss educational opportunities, improvements, and policy.
The purpose of the Student Cabinet is to provide a forum for Maine students’ voices to be heard.
This year will be a special opportunity for Cabinet members to design a pilot project that reflects on the past two school years, to reinvent how schools think about remote and responsive learning as part of the Reinventing Responsive Education Ventures (RREV) initiative, according to a news release. RREV is the product of a $16.9 million award from U.S. DOE to support and develop projects which will strengthen a culture of innovation in PK-12 education.
This is the third year the Maine DOE has appointed students to a Student Cabinet with the goal of integrating student voice into decision-making on education issues that impact their journey through Maine’s education system. In past years students have helped in identifying mental health needs at school, raised issues of racial equity, and helped brainstorm ways to individualize learning.
The Maine DOE is especially interested in having perspectives from students with diverse experiences, interests, cultures, and backgrounds.
It is important that the student cabinet include members who are able to represent and advocate for marginalized groups, including but not limited to students who identify as: gender expansive, English learners and other bilingual/multilingual students, members of a racial or ethnic minority in Maine, economically disadvantaged, new to living in Maine, or living with a mental and/or physical health diagnosis, as well as students who have special educational needs, experience in the juvenile justice system, or experience in one of the many different educational pathways found in education, including Extended Learning Opportunities, Adult Education programs, and Career & Technical Education.
There are 16-20 seats that are open for students in grades 4 – 12 and first year of college. The newly selected members will serve for a term of two years starting this November. All 16 counties in Maine will be represented on the Student Cabinet.
Selected cabinet members will be expected to attend scheduled meetings, prepare for each meeting as needed, work in a collaborative manner with one another and with Department staff as needed; and express views and opinions openly, constructively, and respectfully.
Students interested in serving on the Maine DOE Student Cabinet will need to submit the electronic application by Monday, October 25 at 5 p.m. Applications can be submitted electronically here.