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TO:  Superintendents of Schools  and Social Studies Department Chairs


FROM: Susan A. Gendron


SUBJECT: Teaching Wabanaki History and Culture in the Classroom


DATE:  March  18, 2005


I am pleased to announce that the Maine Council of Social Studies (MCSS), in collaboration with the Wabanaki Studies Commission and the American Friends Service Committee, are sponsoring an interactive workshop, “The Spirit of Public Law 291: Teaching Wabanaki History and Culture in the Classroom.”  This is a plenary session of the MCSS spring conference that is intended to support educators in  implementing Public Law 2001, Chapter 403, commonly known as LD 291.  The training will introduce participants to Wabanaki history and culture as they integrate this information into local curriculum in alignment with the Learning Results.  Participants from all grade levels are invited to participate, including teachers, staff involved in curriculum development and educational technicians, and pre-service teachers. The program takes place at the Augusta Civic Center on Monday, April 4, 2005 from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m.


Speakers for this event include:


v      Donna Loring, author and sponsor of LD 291. She has served in the Legislature representing the Penobscot Nation for eight years.


v      Denise Altvater, a Passmaquoddy, is director of the Wabanaki Program of the American Friends Service Committee.  She won the 2001  Foundation Award, “Leadership for a Changing World,” and the 2004 Maryann Hartmann Award of the University of Maine for her role among outstanding women leaders of Maine.


v      Wayne Newell, a Passamaquoddy, is the native language and culture coordinator at Indian Township School.  He won the distinction of having been formally named a “National Treasure” by the U.S. Department of the Interior/Bureau of Indian Affairs. He earned his M.A. at Harvard University.


v      Dr. Maureen Smith, an Oneida, is director of Native American Studies and is associate professor of history at the University of Maine.  She earned her Ph.D. at the University of Wisconsin.


v      Rebecca Sockbeson, a Penobscot, is director of Multicultural Affairs at the University of Southern Maine.  She earned her M.A. at Harvard University.


v      Maulian Dana, a Penobscot, is a university student.


You may register for this exceptional opportunity on the web at  For further information, contact Betsy Fitzgerald at Erskine Academy at 445-2962.