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 11, Issue 11

15 March 2017

IDEA B Grant Application 

Audience: All
The Agency of Education is seeking public comment on the state's annual Vermont Part B Federal grant application, which guides supports and services for students aged 3-22 who have, or are at risk of having, special needs. The annual Vermont Part B Federal grant application is now posted for 60 days for public review. As required, the Agency of Education will be accepting public comments for the 30 days from March 10, 2017 to April 9, 2017.
Contact: Cindy Moran, State Director of Special Education, at cindy.moran@vermont.gov or US mail Vermont Agency of Education, 219 North Main Street, Suite 402, Barre, Vermont 05641

Teaching Strategies Gold Introductory Trainings

Audience: Birth-Kindergarten Educators and Providers
The Agency of Education is offering free Teaching Strategies Gold (TSG) Introductory trainings. TSG is the recommended formative assessment measure in Vermont. As a prequalified prekindergarten program, providers are required to use TSG to document a child’s progress. This free 12-hour training is part of the Early Learning Challenge Grant. Space is limited to 20 participants in each session. There are two separate registration pages with different training dates and locations: April-May TSG Trainings and May-July TSG Trainings. Also, we will be setting up one-day TSG refresher trainings for people who have taken the two-day intro training already, and we are trying to determine where to hold these trainings.  Please take this short survey if you are interested in attending a refresher training.
Contact: Shirley Rawson at shirley.rawson@vermont.gov

Education Census Data Collection

Audience: Superintendents, Educator Census Data Collection Contacts
The 2016-2017 Education Census Data Collection was due Friday, March 3, 2017. Please submit your data to the AOE. 
Contact: Help Desk at (802) 479-104 for application issues, and Debi Price for data questions at debora.price@vermont.gov

Vermont Work-Based Learning (WBL) Standards and WBL within the Career Development Progression

Audience: Secondary Educators and Administrators
The Vermont Legislation includes work-based learning opportunities as part of the Act 77 Flexible Pathways Initiative. The updated Vermont Work-Based Learning Standards broadly define quality work-based learning and reflect Vermont’s Education Quality Standards and federal and state law. The Vermont  Work-Based Learning within the Career Development Progression chart includes information centered on how work-based learning fits into the continuum of career development. Secondary schools and Career Technical Education Centers should reference the following definitions, sample experiences, and personalized learning plan connections when developing work-based learning experiences.
Contact: Veronica Newton at (802) 479-1408 or veronica.newton@vermont.gov

2017 BEST/MTSS Summer Institute

Audience: School Teams of Educators, Family Members, Community and Human Services Providers
The 2017 BEST/MTSS Summer Institute: Personalizing Education: Individualized, Innovative Pathways to Social and Academic Success will be held June 26-29, 2017 in Killington, Vermont. Learn more and register online. Registration is available on a first-come, first served basis. 
Contact: Sherry Schoenberg at sherry.schoenberg@uvm.edu

Courtesy Postings

Vermont Family Network’s Annual Conference on April 5, 2017

Vermont Family Network’s day-long annual conference for families, individuals with special needs and the service providers who support them will be at the Sheraton Burlington Hotel and Conference Center on April 5, 2017. The conference hosts more than 300 attendees, 35 exhibitors, and features 14 workshops geared to helping families who have children with special needs and the professionals who support them. The conference includes a Transition-Age Youth Strand designed to support young people with disabilities who are transitioning into adulthood. Our keynote speaker is Alix Generous, a mental health activist, tech innovator, and storyteller. Her TED Talk “How I Learned to Communicate my Inner Life with Asperger’s” has received 1.4 million views. For more information and to sign up, visit the Vermont Family Network.
Contact: Claire Giroux-Williams at (802) 876-5315, ext. 201 or claire.giroux-williams@vtfn.org

Way to Go School Challenge Feedback

The Way to Go School Challenge is back this fall from September 25, 2017 to October 6, 2017. This two-week event encourages everyone to travel more efficiently (i.e., walk, bike, carpool, and bus). Reduce the cost and impacts of transportation at your school, and be recognized for your efforts too. Whether or not you participated in the past, please complete this five-minute survey by March 24, 2017 and be entered to win a $150 gift card. Your input will help us make another successful year. Learn more about the Way to Go School Challenge results from last year.
Contact: Cara Robechek at cara@veep.org or Deb Sachs at (802) 238-9807

The Gender Spectrum: Gaining Understanding and Moving Toward Creating Gender Inclusive Environments

The Gender Spectrum workshop will describe how gender diversity manifests at different developmental stages, as well as some distinct challenges for gender different/trans kids at different ages. Participants will gain a greater understanding of gender diversity and become more aware of the messages we send kids and families about gender, as well as how to create a gender inclusive environment in your setting.  The workshop, which will be held on March 28, 2017 at the Capitol Plaza in Montpelier, will be presented by Lisa Estivill, a licensed clinic social worker who currently works for Washington County Mental Health. Register online.
Contact:  Julie Medose at (802) 498-3350 or julie.medose@vthec.org

Laughter for Learning: A Stern Center Benefit Show

The Stern Center for Language and Learning, a nonprofit learning center located in Williston, Vermont, is pleased to present two nights of gut-busting improv comedy at the Vermont Comedy Club on  March 22 and 23, 2017. All proceeds from ticket sales go towards the Cynthia K. Hoehl Institute for Excellence, which provides financial assistance to Stern Center students receiving Instruction services and educators receiving Professional Learning. Tickets for 7 p.m. shows are $25 and tickets for 8:30 p.m. shows are $10. Learn more from the Stern Center.
Contact: Ed Wilkens at ewilkens@sterncenter.org

VCSEA Executive Director Vacancy 

The Vermont Council of Special Education Administrators is seeking an Executive Director to carry out a critical leadership role in furthering the mission ad vision of this organization. Qualifications include eligibility for administrative certification in Vermont, and knowledge of Vermont education practice, and federal and state law concerning students with disabilities. More information and a link to the application are available from the VCSEA. Applications should be submitted by March 27, 2017. Position to begin July 1, 2017.

Rowland Foundation Honoring Diversity Grants

The Rowland Foundation has issued a Request for Proposals for its Honoring Diversity Grants. $50,000 in grant money will be issued to select Vermont schools who submit successful applications reflecting their vision for using student voice in enhancing the conversation about cultural, racial and religious differences in their school community and around the state. For more information and application requirements visit the Rowland Foundation.
Contact:  Charles W. Scranton, Executive Director, at cscranton@therowlandfoundation.org

Vermont Foster/Adoptive Family Association/NFI Institute with Dr. Michael Unger

Join us at the Sheraton Hotel in South Burlington on March 31, 2017, for a Presentation by Dr. Michael Unger, “Enhancing Resilience: Nine Things Youth at Risk Need” from  9 a.m. to  4 p.m. How can we show children we are there to help them even when they push us away? How do we make children more resilient when they are angry, self-harming, anxious, abusive or delinquent? Learn strengths-based, resistance proof skills that professionals and non-professionals can use to nurture the resilience of those in their care, presented by an internationally recognized expert on resilience in at-risk youth and celebrated author. Register by March 26, 2017, or learn more online.
Contact: Kaitlyn Moore, Coordinator, at kaitlynmoore@nafi.com

2017 Vermont Teachers Financial Literacy Summer Institute at Champlain College 

This graduate course is being offered June 26 -30, 2017 at Champlain College.  This year’s Institute is exclusively for Vermont high school educators. Teachers who complete the training will have the confidence, skills and curriculum tools to successfully bring financial literacy topics into their classrooms. The Center's 2011-2013 Sumer Institutes have already trained 97 Vermont educators. Online applications will be accepted until May 12, 2017.  There are only 25 spots available in 2017.  For complete information and to apply, visit Champlain College.
Contact:  John Pelletier at (802) 860-2744 or cfl@champlain.edu

Vermont Council of Special Education Administrators Annual Awards Applications 2017

Audience: Principals, Superintendents, School Board Chairs, Curriculum Coordinators, Career and Technology Center Directors, Special Education Administrators, Teachers
The 2017 application forms for both the Gail Lynk Special Education Administrator of the Year and the Golden Apple Awards are now available through the Vermont Council of Special Education Administrators (VCSEA). The Gail Lynk Award will be presented by VCSEA to a Vermont Special Education Administrator who has demonstrated exemplary effort and achievement in the field of special education on behalf of Vermont children. The Gold Apple Awards will be presented to an individual or team demonstrating through professionalism, collaboration, advocacy, resourcefulness and compassion a high level of support for students with disabilities. Applications for each award are due on March 24, 2017.
Contact: Jo-Anne Unruh, executive director of VCSEA at (802)595-5799 or junruh@vcsea.net

Adaptive Swimming Through Autism Speaks

The Greater Burlington YMCA has received a grant from Autism Speaks to assist in funding private swim lessons for individuals with autism. The grant covers six private, one-on-one lessons that are 30 minutes in length. After the six lessons are finished, individuals can choose to continue on a private pay basis or apply for a financial assistance. Carrie Kane, a pediatric physical therapist, is currently providing some of these lessons on Friday afternoons & evenings. This is not a therapy session, but Carrie does bring years of experience working with individuals with autism to the lessons. If you are interested in scheduling with Carrie, please include this information when you contact the YMCA.
Contact: Jess Lukas, Youth and Family Coordinator, Greater Burlington YMCA, at (802) 652-8143 or jlukas@gbymca.org

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Secretary Daniel M. French
219 North Main Street, Suite 402
Barre, VT 05641

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