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For Immediate Release
December 10 2004
Contact: Dan A. Gwadosky
207-626-8400

Secretary of State Formally Launches New and Expanded
Online Civics Education Tools for Students and Teachers

AUGUSTA, MAINE – Secretary of State Dan A. Gwadosky showcased online civics education tools during a press conference Thursday at Benton Elementary School. The online tools have been developed by the Secretary of State for use by students and educators.  Superintendent of Schools for SAD 49 Dean Baker and Benton Elementary School Principal Suanne Giorgetti joined Secretary Gwadosky and fifth grade students for a demonstration of the new services.

Known as The Path to Maine Lawmaking (www.maine.gov/sos/path/index.html), these educational tools are designed to enhance classroom instruction about the Legislative process and Maine State Government.  Specifically, they include an animated cartoon titled “The Road to Maine Laws” and a video about the Maine State Legislature, as well as student activities and resources for teachers.

Additionally, the tools provide instruction about contacting members of the Legislature and information about drafting testimony for public hearings.  With members of the 122 nd Legislature taking office within the past week, Secretary Gwadosky is encouraging educators and students to explore and utilize these online services.

“The Path to Maine Lawmaking serves as a resource for children and adults alike.  These tools are meant to be informative and entertaining.  As teachers seek new ways to think about civics education, I know they'll find value in these online services,” Secretary Gwadosky commented.

Secretary Gwadosky pointed out that this new offering targets grades 5 th -8 th , but is available to everyone.  He noted that it was developed to be consistent with the state's learning results.  These new online tools and services complement the Secretary of State's Kids Page website (www.state.me.us/sos/kids/), which was launched in 1998.

“We hope the online resources provided by the Secretary of State's office will help to connect teachers, students and parents with the legislative process and with the individuals who serve them in government.  We want to make the path to Maine lawmaking easier to understand and travel,” Secretary Gwadosky added.

Before being elected Maine 's 46 th Secretary of State in 1996, Dan Gwadosky served as a member of the Maine House of Representatives for 18 years.  During that time, he was elected Assistant Majority Floor Leader, House Majority Leader and then became the 92nd Speaker of the Maine House of Representatives.