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 12, Issue 17

25 April 2018

Memo to Schools Re: School Safety Infrastructure Grants

Audience: Superintendents, Principals, CTE Directors, Independent School Headmasters, School Board Members and School Crisis Planning Team Members
This week Thomas Anderson, Commissioner of Public Safety and Acting Secretary Heather Bouchey jointly issued a memo to education leadership outlining the timeline for awarding School Safety Grants. Contingent on legislative approval, a RFP will be delivered to schools by June 1, 2018, with proposals due to the Department of Public Safety by July 1, 2018. The grant process is expected to be competitive, with a maximum grant award of $25,000 per school. In preparation for the RFP release, schools are strongly advised to review their responses to the statewide assessment, review the statewide assessment report and begin meeting with relevant stakeholders regarding the anticipated application. For more details, read the full memo from Commissioner Anderson and Acting Secretary Bouchey.
Contact: Mark Bosma at mark.bosma@vermont.gov

Vermont Standards Board for Professional Educators (VSBPE) – Teacher Representative Seat

Audience: Vermont Educators
The VSBPE has an anticipated open seat for a currently practicing teacher representative. The VSBPE is a 13-member, teacher majority, policy-making board appointed by the Governor. The Board’s purpose is to oversee the training, licensing and professional standards of teachers and administrators. Its overarching goal is promotion of educator quality. Board members receive an honorarium for their service and mileage reimbursement for the meetings. Meetings are held monthly at the Agency of Education in Barre, VT. Applications are submitted through the Governor's Boards and Commissions webpage.
Contact: Debi Price at debora.price@vermont.gov

Unpacking the New Media Arts Standards

Audience: Middle and High School Media Arts Teachers
Unpacking the New Media Arts Standards will be held May 18, 2018 from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Central Vermont Career Center (CVCC), Barre, VT. In this workshop, media arts teachers will receive an overview of how the new standards are organized and the major shifts necessary when using them. Strategies for incorporating the artistic processes of creating, presenting, connecting, and responding into your art program will be investigated. The sample Media Arts Proficiency-Based Graduation Requirements with Performance Indicators will be shared and unpacked to create a deeper understanding. Educators will be put into working groups to write learning targets which can be used to analyze existing units of study for alignment to NCAS and department goals. Visual and media arts teachers welcome. Coffee and lunch will be provided by culinary students at CVCC.
Contact: Emily Titterton at (802) 479-1378 or emily.titterton@vermont.gov

English Language Arts and Proficiency-Based Learning Professional Learning Day

Audience: Curriculum Coordinators, English teachers, literacy coaches, PBL coaches
Have questions about proficiency-based learning? Confused about what that means in an English Language Arts (ELA) classroom? Come to the Aldrich Library in Barre on May 9, 2018 from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. for an ELA and Proficiency-based Learning Professional Learning Day. The workshop will focus on the what, why, and how of proficiency-based learning through small- and whole-group activities, discussions, and presentation. Participants will have time to work on planning for the 2018-2019 school year in a collaborative, low-risk environment. Registration due by May 1, 2018. Six professional learning hours will be offered at this free workshop.
Contact: Sarah Birgé, at (802) 479-1364 or sarah.birge@vermont.gov

Vermont PE Assessment Policies and Guidelines: Important Updates for Independent Schools

Audience: District test administrators and PE teachers
To provide greater access to the Vermont Physical Education Assessment, the Vermont Agency of Education has purchased a dedicated FitnessGram license for publicly funded Vermont students enrolled at Independent schools throughout the state. This license will allow all Independent schools to offer the Vermont Physical Education Assessment at their own facilities using their own staff. Find this news and the latest PE Assessment updates in the new Vermont PE Assessment policies and guidelines.
Contact: Gabriel McGann at gabriel.mcgann@vermont.gov or (802) 479-1444

Descriptors for Performance Levels in the Annual Snapshot

Audience: Everyone
Thank you to all who provided input to the Agency of Education on the four performance level descriptors for the Annual Snapshot indicators. About 180 stakeholders from across the state completed the survey. After careful consideration of the comments, the agency has determined the following terms to describe school, SU/SD, and state performance: Not meeting (lowest performance level); Approaching (second lowest performance level); Meeting (second highest performance level); and Exceeding (highest performance level).
Contact: Patrick Halladay at (802) 479-1712 or patrick.halladay@vermont.gov

2018 Multi-Tiered System of Supports Survey

Audience: Superintendents and Principals
As required by Act 117 - VSA Title 16, Section 2904, each superintendent shall annually provide to the Vermont Secretary of Education the status of the tiered system of supports in each school in the supervisory union or school district. The link to the 2018 Multi-Tiered System of Supports (MTSS) Survey is available now. Please complete this survey online before the June 1, 2018 deadline. The data collected from the 2017 MTSS Survey was used to inform professional learning, guide technical assistance, and respond to legislative requests. Additionally, a copy of the 2017 MTSS Summary Report is available on the MTSS webpage. The window for completing the survey is May 1, 2018 through June 1, 2018.
Contact: Dr. Emma Louie at (802) 479-1336 or emma.louie@vermont.gov

Courtesy Posts

The views, opinions, and resources shared in this section of the WFM are solely those of the original contributors. The Agency of Education does not endorse the views expressed by these contributors and reserves the right to refuse submissions. Questions related to any of these resources should be directed to the organizations, people, and opportunities as shared.

Basic Mediation Workshop At Champlain College

Champlain College is hosting a basic mediation workshop May 2 to 5, 2018. This workshop is ideal for professionals who want to be prepared to manage conflict in a positive and constructive manner. Participants will learn and practice skills in identifying and framing issues, listening for interests and guiding the process and will leave empowered to approach conflict with confidence. The workshop has been approved by the Vermont Board of Mandatory Continuing Legal Education for 26.25 hours.
Contact: Susannah Eriksson at (802) 865-5441 or eriksson@champlain.edu

Vermont Council on Reading Spring Conference

Vermont Council on Reading will hold their Spring Conference on May 11, 2018 from 8 a.m to 3:30 p.m. With a keynote by Lester Lamnack: "When Books Become Best Friends: One Book/Many Visits." Explore the potential of revisiting a small collection of carefully selected books through focused read-aloud experiences across time. Lester will demonstrate that the key to successful writing is harnessing the power of close reading. Participants will learn how their students can transfer what they know about reading structures and strategies into practices that will hone their writing skills and help them become more focused writers. Lester will also present two other keynotes: "Read-aloud as Instructional Investment" and "Writers ARE Readers: Use Reading Structures and Strategies to Nurture More Powerful Writers."
Contact: Kathryn Leo-Nyquist at leo@champlain.edu

Nominations Due for the Vermont Humanities Council’s Educator Award

Nominations for the Vermont Humanities Council’s Victor R. Swenson Humanities Educator Award are due April 30, 2018. The award recognizes a Vermont educator in grades 6 through 12 who exemplifies excellence in the teaching of the humanities. It includes a $1,000 award and is named for the Council’s founding Executive Director, Victor R. Swenson. Nominate an educator at vermonthumanities.org.
Contact: Linda Wrazen at (802) 262-1357 or lwrazen@vermonthumanities.org

Building a Culture of Equity

Vermont Principals Association will host Building a Culture of Equity at the Capitol Plaza Hotel in Montpelier on May 30, 2018 from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. This "Equity Summit" is a day-long, facilitated conversation about what equity means and why it matters to efforts to support all of Vermont's students. A diverse group of principals, CTE Directors and other school leaders, policy-makers and government agency and department representatives, students, teachers, superintendents and other school administrators are encouraged to join this conversation. Registration is $50 and free to students.
Contact: Linda Wheatley at lwheatley@vpaonline.org

Building a Culture of Equity  2018 VPA Leadership Academy

"Equity, Change and School Leadership" is the theme of this year's summer Academy for school leaders held July 31, 2018 to August 2, 2018 at Killington Grand Resort. Dr. Pedro Noguera, UCLA professor and author of "Excellence Through Equity," will speak on Tuesday, July 31, 2018. Seven educational strands follow a morning panel on Wednesday, August 1, 2018 - topics include Trauma-Informed Schools, Mobile Devices, Equity and Change, Understanding Whiteness, Building Self-Regulation and Collective Efficacy. The Center for Creative Leadership will conclude the Academy with a morning workshop on a specific leadership tool to strengthen school culture on Thursday, August 2, 2018. Registration fees are $525/$575 for VPA members/non-members. One day options are available.
Contact: Linda Wheatley at lwheatley@vpaonline.org

Fundations Levels Kindergarten, Grade 1, and Grade 2: Dates Available in May and June

The Stern Center is offering a range of Fundations workshop dates in May and June. Fundations for grades K through 2 is a phonological/phonemic awareness, phonics and spelling program for the general education classroom. Fundations is based upon the Wilson Reading Principles and is a Tier 1 and Tier 2 program designed to provide high-quality classroom instruction for all students, as well as double dose instruction for those students requiring more targeted intervention.
Contact: Caitlin Niland at (802) 878-2332, ext. 320 or cniland@sterncenter.org

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