Exploring Maine’s Proficiency-Based Education System


This trip offered an opportunity to understand the role of school, district, and state in moving an education system towards proficiency-based learning. Participants learned how Maine took a systems approach to making the shift and will see how strong district-led efforts to develop proficiency-based pathways have influenced the state department of education, both in how it supports schools and proposed a move to proficient-based diplomas developed by local districts.  In addition, participants were able to observe classes and speak with faculty and students about their experience in creating a proficiency-based school.

Recommended Resources

Introductory Materials

Trip Overview

General Resources on College and Career Readiness

National High School Center:  Defining College and Career Readiness Resource Guide

American Youth Policy Forum’s Success at Every Step

National High School Center’s College and Career Development Organizer

General Resources on Competency-Based Learning

American Youth Policy Forum’s Annotated Bibliography on Competency-Based Learning

CompetencyWorks, When Success is the Only Option, Executive Summary

CompetencyWorks, Necessary for Success, Executive Summary

Nellie Mae Education, Making Mastery Work, Executive Summary

Maine State Information


Maine Center for Best Practices

Maine State Legislation

Maine Stautory Language

Maine Learning Results

Maine Department of Education PPT Pt. 1

Maine Department of Education PPT Pt. 2

Maine Department of Education PPT Pt. 3

Great Schools Partnership and Maine Cohort for Customized Learning

GSP and MCCL Overview

GSP Proficiency-Based Learning Overview and New England Secondary School Consortium

GSP District Self-Assessment

Regional School Unit 57 Information


Maine Center for Best Practices: Case Study, “The Logical Next Step”

Maine School Administrative District 15 Information


Supporting Materials

Regional School Unit 2 Information


Maine Center for Best Practices:  Case Study “The Long Conversation”

Supporting Materials

Regional School Unit 18 Information


Maine Center for Best Practices: Case Study “Ready, Aim…”

Supporting Materials Pt. 1

Supporting Materials Pt. 2

Additional Materials

Achieve, Advancing Competency-Based Pathways to College and Career Readiness


The American Youth Policy Forum (AYPF), a nonprofit, nonpartisan professional development organization based in Washington, DC, provides learning opportunities for policy leaders, practitioners, and researchers working on youth and education issues at the national, state, and local levels. AYPF’s events and policy reports are made possible by the support of a consortium of philanthropic foundations. For a complete list, click here.

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