Weekly Field Memo

The Agency of Education created the weekly field memo to keep subscribers up-to-date with current education policy, state-wide education initiatives, and official messages from the AOE. The field memo may also include education-related items from other state agencies. And at our discretion, we may include other events or information from other organizations not directly affiliated with the AOE. The field memo is not intended to serve as a newsletter.

Volume 10, Issue 41

09 November 2016

Reminder: Rule 4500 Restraint and Seclusion

Audience: Superintendents, Principals, Special Educators and Teaching Staff

A revised reporting form can be found on the AOE website along with the text of Rule 4500 and FAQ about Rule 4500. For those new to Vermont, Rule 4500 governs the use of Restraint and Seclusion in Vermont learning environments that receive public funding, or over which the Vermont Agency of Education has regulatory authority. Among its requirements is the reporting of all incidents of restraint and seclusion in Vermont’s educational settings. 

Contact: Richard Boltax at richard.boltax@vermont.gov

Classroom Assessment Scoring System Pre-K Observation Training

Audience: Administrators, Assessment Coordinators, Program Directors

The Classroom Assessment Scoring System (CLASS) measures the interactions in a classroom, which are essential indicators of learning outcomes. It is recommended by the Vermont Agency of Education and is used as part of the Vermont Step Ahead Recognition System (STARS). Prepare to fairly and accurately observe and code classrooms by attending this free two-day training - the first step in earning your CLASS observer certification. There will be six sessions offered throughout the state. Learn more 

Contact: Ellen Cairns at (802) 479-1443 or ellen.cairns@vermont.gov

The K-8 Coherence Map

Audience: Curriculum Directors, Math Coaches, K-8 Teachers

The Coherence Map is an online, digital resource that illustrates the connections among Common Core State Standards for Mathematics. It can help to build student understanding by linking together concepts within and across grades. Additionally, the Coherence Map can be used to identify gaps in a student's knowledge by tracing a standard back through its logical pre-requisites. The latest update to the Coherence Map includes example assessment items from Smarter Balanced and PARCC that illustrate the shifts required by the standards. 

Contact: Pat Fitzsimmons at (802) 479-1425 or pat.fitzsimmons@vermont.gov

Unpacking The New Arts Standards Workshop

Audience: Primary and Secondary Visual Arts Teachers

The Vermont Agency of Education will host two workshops to be held on December 1, 2016, for Secondary Art Teachers and December 9, 2016, for Primary Art Teachers from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.  at the AOE office in Barre. In this workshop, educators will receive an overview of how the new standards are organized and the major shifts necessary when using them. The standards will be unpacked to create a deeper understanding. Educators will be put into working groups to write unit plans using the new standards. Educators will remain connected via an on-line community. Registration will be first come, first served. Learn more and register online

Contact: Emily Titterton at emily.titterton@vermont.gov

Health Education Workshop: "All About Those Skills - Making the Transition to a Skills-Based Approach to Health Education"

Audience: Health Educators, Curriculum Directors, Elementary Teachers

Health educators can support students in one of the most critical and meaningful ways – by helping them develop the skills they need to be healthy for a lifetime. This workshop on January 19, 2017 from 9 a.m. until noon in White River Junction. is designed to provide participants with the knowledge and skills they need to implement a skills-based approach to health education in their schools and classrooms. After this session, participants will be able to transition (or begin to transition) to a skills-based approach to health education, which is required to meet Vermont and National Health Education Standards. Presented by Holly Alperin and Sarah Benes, authors of "The Essentials of Teaching Health Education" Register online

Contact: Tom Aloisi at thomas.aloisi@vermont.gov

Vermont Parent Training Center Funding Opportunity

Audience: Vermont Parent Training Information Centers

The Vermont Agency of Education is announcing a funding opportunity for proposals from Vermont's Parent Training Information center(s) to support the Agency in meeting the requirements of the U.S. Department of Education - Office of Special Education Programs State Personnel Development Grant (SPDG) to work in partnership with organizations involved in, and concerned with, the education of children with disabilities, including parent training and information centers funded under section 671 of IDEA. 

Contact: Meg Porcella, SPDG Co-Director at meg.porcella@vermont.gov

Crisis Text Line available in Vermont - Text VT to 741741

Audience: All

Vermonters who are experiencing a mental health crisis now have a new way to find support when and where they need it, 24 hours a day. Crisis Text Line™ provides free*, round-the-clock support, seven days a week by providing access via text messaging to trained Crisis Counselors at the moment help and support are needed. This service is being provided through a partnership between the Vermont Department of Mental Health and the national organization Crisis Text Line. This is a welcomed key addition to the other mental health services available for Vermonters to access when circumstances or events become difficult to handle. Learn more about the national organization

*for Verizon, AT&T, Sprint or T-Mobile carriers; all others carriers may charge rates

Contact: Melissa Bailey, Deputy Commissioner of the Department of Mental Health, at (802) 241-0122 or melissa.bailey@vermont.gov

Courtesy Postings

TRY For the Environment - Applications Due November 15, 2016

TRY for the Environment is looking for teen teachers!  TRY stands for Teens Reaching Youth and it is an environmental leadership opportunity for youth in grades 7-12 and has received the Governor's Award for Environmental Excellence for the past two years. TRY is a teen-led environmental education program with an embedded service-learning component designed to teach environmental literacy and responsibility to younger youth.  TRY includes four different program areas to connect young people to real-world environmental problems in which they can be key change agents helping to create real-world solutions. Program areas include: renewable energy, climate change through waste solutions, food systems and forest and trees. Applications must be received no later than November 15, 2016. Learn more

Contact: Lauren Traister, 4-H Teen & Leadership Program Coordinator, at (802) 888-4972 ext. 402 or lauren.traister@uvm.edu

Vermont Wood Chip and Pellet Heating Conference

There are more than 65 schools in Vermont that heat with wood and more that are actively considering it. This conference for both facilities managers and school decision makers if they own or are considering modern wood heat. The Vermont Wood Chip and Pellet Heating Conference which will be held on  November 30, 2016, at the Sally Fox Conference Center at the Waterbury State Office Complex. The event will run from 8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.  Lunch will be included and registration is free. Please note that due to security requirements at the Waterbury State Office Complex, all attendees MUST pre-register by November 22nd, and will be required to show valid ID at the door and receive a visitor badge. View the agenda 

Contact: Jeff Forward, facilities coordinator at CESU, at jeff.forward@cesuvt.org

Literacy as Life: Disciplinary Literacy and Performance Assessment Design 

This three-credit graduate course will build knowledge of creating curriculum-embedded performance assessments based on Proficiency Based Graduation Requirements and content standards. Participants will understand performance assessment based on proficiencies and standards and analyze data from the PA to inform next steps in instruction. The instructor is Alysia Backman. This course will run from January 19 - May 4, 2017. Register online 

Contact: Lauren Wooden at (802) 497-1642 or lauren@cvedcvt.org

Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drug Education - One Credit Online Graduate Course

This online course is offered as one of a series of courses by the Vermont Education Collaborative toward health education endorsement.  Students taking the course for credit and successfully complete the course will receive one graduate credit through Union Institute and University.  This course is offered so that teachers and health and guidance personnel have a sufficient level of professional development to enable them to competently teach or provide other services required in the school's Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drug (ATOD) prevention education program.  The course begins November 13, 2016, and costs $550.00.  Learn more

Contact: Catherine Diduk at catherine@healthandlearning.org

Working With Youth Conference - Register Now to Attend

The 11th Annual Working With Youth Conference will be held November 14 & 15, 2016 at Lake Morey Resort in Fairlee, Vermont. The Working With Youth Conference brings together anyone whose personal or professional life impacts the lives of youth in some significant way. The Vermont Working with Youth Conference is an ongoing project that delivers both general and targeted learning opportunities designed to build shared vocabulary, common tools, and the depth of commitment that Vermont's youth deserve. By participating in this process together, we hope to highlight our common practice, forge tighter networks, and bring greater attention to all of us who work to improve the lives of youth aged 10-21.  Full conference registration ($130) includes all sessions, keynote address, breakfast, lunch and breaks on both days. One-day only registration ($80) includes only the activities held on that day. Register online

Contact: Greig Pinkham at kpinkham@wcysb.org

Getting Messy with Nonfiction Online Course

This three-credit graduate course for teachers of grades 3-8 will center on the work of Kylene Beers and Robert E. Probst and their book "Reading Nonfiction: Notice & Note: Stances, Signposts, and Strategy." Teachers will learn cutting-edge strategies to use in the classroom and map out a strategic plan for classroom-based applications for this work. Instructors are Ellen Thompson and June Golato. The course will run January 18 - March 15, 2017. Register online

Contact: Lauren Wooden at (802) 497-1642 or lauren@cvedcvt.org 

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