Spirit Series has been awarded $500,000 by the Maine Department of Education in a $1,000,000 initiative to bring Series programming to 12,500 students across the state over the next three years. Our first statewide partnership—driven by the Series’ strong alignment with the Department’s vision for the future of education in Maine—points the way to a new era for our organization. Now entering our third decade, we are inspired by this great opportunity to fulfill our mission and deliver programming at scale!
This initiative will focus on our new Social Emotional Learning and 21st Century literacy program for seventh through tenth grades: SpiritCorps. Promoting self-discovery and positive core values, SpiritCorps begins with heartfelt video stories from staff and friends, inspired by the lives of the historic heroes we celebrate in Spirit Series. With guidance from adult volunteer Story Coaches, students undertake a rigorous self-reflection and writing process to identify, craft and record a true-life SpiritCorps video story of their own.
And the outcomes thus far have been remarkable, as partner teacher, Marne Treves, recalls: “Their stories made me cry! These students said amazing things and just blew me away.” In 2018, Maine Commissioner of Education–Pender Makin–then Assistant Superintendent in Brunswick, ME concluded: “The SERIES’ joyful, rigorous, transformative approach to classroom learning can be a model in Maine. The more students who experience SPIRIT SERIES…the better off our communities will be!”