AUGUSTA — The state Department of Education is inviting the public to weigh in one last time on its plan for creating a fairer and more constructive system for holding schools accountable and helping them improve.

The Department will submit a formal request for flexibility under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act to the U.S. Department of Education by Sept. 6. The process, which has been underway since fall 2011, has included considerable public engagement, including a survey with more than 1,500 responses, several public forums, a public website and four working groups with stakeholder participation.

Forums are scheduled Aug. 20 online; Aug. 21 in Westbrook; and Aug. 23 in Brewer.

To better understand the plan, read an overview on the Department’s Accountability and Improvement System at The Department invites feedback through a public survey that can be found on the same page. The online forum is Monday from 6 to 7:30 p.m.

For more information, visit

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