Maine Comprehensive Assessment System (MeCAS)

What is measured matters. Educational assessments provide timely, accurate information about the skills and academic growth of students, schools and the state as a whole. They also ensure schools are held accountable for the progress of their students.

The Maine Comprehensive Assessment System (MeCAS) provides educators and parents valuable tools to understand where every public school student is and where they may need additional support to become college and career ready by graduation. In addition to the assessments offered by the State, individual districts may choose to use their own local assessment instruments and/or teacher-developed classroom assessments.

The Maine Educational Assessment (MEA) includes required assessments in mathematics, English language arts/literacy, science and English language proficiency. In the spring of 2015, Maine used the MEA in Mathematics and English Language Arts/Literacy, developed by the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium, as its statewide assessment. This computer adaptive assessment measured higher-order thinking in Maine’s recently updated standards in mathematics and ELA/literacy. The alternate assessment for students with significant cognitive disabilities was also a computer-adaptive assessment, developed by the National Center and State Collaborative (NCSC).

Legislation enacted in June 2015 discontinued Maine’s membership in the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium. As a result, the Department is currently working through a competitive process of determining a subsequent method of assessment including the creation of a task force to inform requirements and gather feedback. The MEA in Science will continue to be a paper-pencil test similar to the science test administered in the past. The alternate for students with significant cognitive disabilities will continue to be the Personalized Alternate Assessment Portfolio (PAAP).

The MEA English Language Proficiency, named ACCESS for ELLs, will continue to be a paper-pencil test that measures the proficiency of students identified as English learners. The alternate for students with significant cognitive disabilities will be the paper-pencil Alternate ACCESS for ELLs.  

A complete calendar of 2014-15 MeCAS testing dates is available here.


Charlene Tucker
Director of Assessment & Accountability

Nancy Godfrey
Acting Assessment Coordinator

Complete list of Maine assessment contacts