I was really surprised when I realized many of the students in the classes did not go to church!  Most of these kids heard about Released Time and had a genuine longing to find out about Jesus Christ…and I see Him moving in their lives every day!

Released Time Teacher, Coastal School Ministries


Updated July 2009
SUMMARY for Maine
General Information The first step is to gather as much information as you can about the Maine Released Time statute, what, if anything, is being done with Released Time in the state, and how a Released Time program may address state educational objectives (e.g. self-esteem, values education). Determine who will make the decision whether to allow a program and make an appointment to see that person. If the principal refers you to the school board, you would be wise to meet individually with school board members before presenting the concept at a school board meeting.

Keep in mind that school officials are not required to approve a program. However, with a carefully crafted approach and with statutory recognition, you should expect success in gaining approval for the program.


Department of Education Website Maine Department of Education

Website: http://www.state.me.us/education/index.html


DETAILS for Maine
Statutes According to Maine compulsory attendance law (§5001 (2) (c)), all children, ages 7-17 (inclusive) must attend public school or a private school which offers "equivalent instruction." ME. REV. STAT. ANN. tit. 20-A, § 5001-A

The Maine Legislature enacted §1224-A in order to specifically permit Released Time. Public school students who participate in a course of moral instruction at their place of worship (or other suitable place), may be granted Released Time up to a maximum of one hour per week. Each local school unit has the option of granting Released Time and such Released Time must be in accordance with policies established by the local school unit. The Released Time program cannot be financed by the public school nor can it take place on public school property. ME. REV. STAT. ANN. tit. 20, § 1224-A


Regulations Guidelines for operation of Released Time programs are left to the discretion of each local school unit.