The Maine Education Policy Research Institute (MEPRI), a nonpartisan institute co-located at the University of Southern Maine and the University of Maine was established in 1995 to collect and analyze education information and perform targeted research for the Maine Legislature.
What prompted the establishment of MEPRI?
The 1990s were a decade within which many states embarked upon education reform initiatives. Maine set the course for a comprehensive plan of standards for student learning, the Maine Learning Results. It became apparent that these goals for learning, in order to be comprehensive and well-founded, needed to be examined within the construct of reliable data. Thus, in 1995 the Legislature created MEPRI.
MEPRI creates and maintains an information system that tracks important education data for grades K-12 and conducts research on a wide variety of education issues that are directly related to the Legislature’s short-term and long-term policymaking efforts. Policy areas include: school finance reform (including Essential Programs and Services), student performance, school size, student aspirations, the Maine Learning Results, and high- and low-performing schools, among others.
What is the structure within which MEPRI operates?
A Steering Committee, consisting of eight representatives from various entities with interest in the work of the Institute, serves an advisory function to both the Legislature and the Institute. The Steering Committee represents the following statewide education entities: