School Choice

The Maine Department of Education is working toward an education system that offers families the ability to choose the educational setting that works best for each student, when they learn and where they learn.

  • Public Charter Schools. Maine became the 41st state to allow public charter schools in September 2011. The first of these public schools of choice opened in fall 2012.
  • Home Instruction. Parents can choose to educate their children at home. They must file a Notice of Intent with the Maine DOE and the local superintendent of schools and offer assurances that they'll provide their children an adequate education.
  • Maine Law and School Choice. Generally, students must attend the public schools in the district where their parents reside. Maine law, however, allows some exceptions to the rule.
  • School Choice Work Group. This legislatively-created group was responsible for developing a model that will allow for public school choice. They reported their findings to the Maine Legislature.
  • School Approval. Maine law requires school administrative units and private schools be approved annually.
  • School Enrollment. Resources and processes are available to enroll in Maine's public or private schools or for home instruction.