The idea for the Coalition grew our of a July 1990 symposium hosted by the Maine Development Foundation called Rethinking Education for Maine’s Children. Later that year, the Foundation assembled a planning committee under the leadership of form UNUM Chairman and CEO, Jim Orr, and, in early 1991, the Coalition formed. Subsequent Chairs: Weston Bonney, Denison Gallaudet, Ronald Bancroft and David Ott and Peter Geiger.
In September 1992, after nearly two years of discussion, research, and meetings around the state, the Coalition issued its systemic 15-point blueprint for restructuring education in Maine in a report entitled Success Begins With Education.
The first goal in the report, learning results, was enacted into law on June 1997. The Coalition played an important leadership role in helping to pass this legislation to create standards in Maine’s education system. Now the Coalition is focusing its work on ensuring that Maine schools have the resources necessary to reach the high standards set forth in the Learning Results. A revised goals document was released in December 2002. The organization administers the School Matters! Program designed to assist classroom teachers with the implementation of Learning Results.
Former Governor Angus King, former Education Secretary Richard Riley, and other national education organizations have recognized the Coalition for its leadership role and influence. The coalition receives numerous requests to lend its credibility to education efforts throughout the state. MCEE was the recipient of the 2000 National Alliance for Business Distinguished Performance Award for Business Coalition of the Year.