Maine allows for students to earn credit for their outside-the-classroom learning.

Extended learning opportunities emerged in Maine out of grassroots efforts to offer credit bearing out-of-school opportunities for students to develop life and career skills and give students more flexibility and choice in fulfilling school-based requirements. Extended learning opportunities are not structured or regulated by the state and vary significantly across districts in scope and access.

Which students are eligible?

Secondary school students attending public schools.

Who can be a program provider?

Community partners.

What is an example of an Extended learning opportunity?

Extended learning opportunities may include but are not limited to an internship, job shadow, mentorship, apprenticeship, digital learning, independent study, and community service.

Who approves provider applications?

Extended learning opportunities are reviewed on a district-by-district basis.

What has been a key factor for success in extended learning programs?

Maintenance of a dedicated extended learning coordinator position has been cited as a key factor in the success of district programs. The position is responsible for recruiting and maintaining relationships with local community partners, finding matches between students’ needs and potential extended learning opportunities, and serving as an advisor to students to design credit bearing experiences that meet district standards.