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 15, Issue 2

13 January 2021

COVID-19 Updates and Guidance for Schools

This section of the Weekly Field Memo contains updates to COVID-19 guidance from the Vermont Agency of Education released since the last Weekly Field Memo and other COVID-19-related updates. For a complete list of AOE-issued guidance, please visit our COVID-19 Guidance for Vermont Schools and Continuity of Learning websites. For the most comprehensive and up-to-date information on the COVID-19 response in Vermont, visit the Health Department's Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) website.

Guidance: Finance

Since last week's Weekly Field Memo the Agency of Education has issued Fact Sheet: Governor's Emergency Education Relief Fund II (1/12) and Fact Sheet: Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund II (1/12).
Contact: Jill Briggs-Campbell at jill.briggscampbell@vermont.gov

Vermont PBS: Distance Learning Monthly Schedule for January and Teacher Planning Kit

Audience: Curriculum Directors, Principals, PreK-12 Teachers
The Schedule of Vermont PBS Programs for the month of January 2021 is now available, featuring weekly thematic bundles of analog, digital and broadcast resources to support all learning models. In addition, the PBS Teacher Planning Kit for November-January is also available, and includes bundled media and materials that can be used during in-person or remote instruction, both with or without internet access. Planning sheets for elementary and secondary education are divided into three sections: “watch,” which includes the program; “teach,” which connects activities, games and lessons to the program; and “explore,” which provides additional resources about a specific topic or theme. For more information about the partnership between the Vermont Agency of Education and Vermont PBS, visit the AOE’s Vermont PBS webpage or the Vermont PBS Distance Learning page.
Contacts: Emily Leute at emily.leute@vermont.gov or Heather Duhamel at hduhamel@vermontpbs.org

COVID-19 in Schools Data on Health Department Website

Audience: All
The Health Department has been posting data on COVID-19 in K-12 schools since mid-September. The table was recently updated in response to user feedback. The table counts people with laboratory confirmed (by PCR test) COVID-19 who were at the school, attended a school-sanctioned event, or otherwise interacted with the school community during their infectious period. The counts represent cases by school, not individual person. So, if someone interacts with multiple school communities during their infectious period, they will appear in the table multiple times. Please read more about what information is presented in the table.
Contact: COVID19.DataEntryTeam@vermont.gov


Other Agency of Education and State of Vermont Updates

This section of the Weekly Field Memo contains posts from the Agency of Education and other State of Vermont agencies that are not specifically related to the COVID-19 response.

2021 Educator License Renewals Open Week of Jan. 19, 2021

Audience: Licensed Educators
Licensing renewals open on Jan. 19, 2021. If your license is up for renewal this year, you should have received a memo outlining the steps needed to renew it earlier this week. If you are unsure of how to proceed or whether your license is up for renewal, please contact the AOE Office of Educator Licensure. Renewing educators working in a Vermont school associated with a Local/Regional Standards Board should be in contact with their respective board.
Contact: Amy Scalabrini at AOE.licensinginfo@vermont.gov

Literary Learning: Newsletter for English Language Arts in Vermont

Audience: English Teachers, Literacy Coaches
The January issue of the bi-monthly newsletter, Literary Learning, is now available to read on the Agency of Education’s English Language Arts (ELA) webpage. This issue contains articles about reflecting on current educational practices, student engagement and motivation, and the benefits of teaching handwriting, as well as an interest inventory to inform the development of future professional learning opportunities for ELA. Be sure to subscribe to the Agency’s ELA listserv in order to stay informed about ELA in Vermont.
Contact: Emily Leute at emily.leute@vermont.gov

Registration for Free Swank Streaming Service is Still Open

Audience: Educators, Administrators
Registration is still open for free Swank K-12 streaming, which is available to all Vermont public and approved independent schools for the next two years through the Vermont Department of Libraries. This service provides school librarians and teachers with access to hundreds of movies students can access remotely. Please complete this form to sign up and find FAQ's, a how-to guide for logging in and a teacher's guide on the main school movie license web page.
Contact: Jonathan Clark at jonathan.l.clark@vermont.gov

Edmodo Quick Start Series

Audience: All
Edmodo, the web-based LMS and platform for the AOE’s new VTEd Learns Network communication and collaboration space, will be facilitating two quick start learning series for educators. “Setting Up Your Classroom for In-Person, Hybrid and Remote Learning Models” will focus on classroom-based learning strategies and run three consecutive Tuesdays beginning Jan. 26, 2021, through Feb. 9, 2021. "Digital Colleague Collaboration with Edmodo" will focus on peer-to-peer collaboration, including professional development and establishing and facilitating statewide professional groups. This series will run for three consecutive Thursdays from Jan. 28, 2021, through Feb. 11, 2021. All sessions will take place from 3:30 p.m.-  4:30 p.m. If you would like to participate in the series and do not already have an Edmodo account, please fill out this form. By doing so, you will automatically be registered for the series. If you do already have an active Edmodo account and want to participate, or have additional questions about Edmodo, please contact Sigrid Olson.
Contact: Sigrid Olson at sigrid.olson@vermont.gov

2021 Child Nutrition Free and Reduced Report Available

The annual report showing the percentage of students approved for free and reduced-price school meals been posted to the AOE website. This report is based on the total enrollment and number of free and reduced students on the last operating day of October that School Food Authorities reported to us in the site enrollment report. These numbers are used for Child Nutrition Program purposes, and may be used by other programs. Please note that this report is different from the October 1st FRL data collected by the AOE in the Fall census (DC03), which is used for most non-Child Nutrition Program purposes.
Contact: Rosie Krueger at mary.krueger@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. Please refer to the Weekly Field Memo submission guidelines for additional information.

Until further notice, the Courtesy Posts will only include posts related to in-person training, events or meetings that affirmatively comply with current health guidance from the Vermont Department of Health, the Agency of Commerce and Community Development and/or the Vermont Agency of Education.

VSBIT Announces Change in Leadership

The Vermont School Boards Insurance Trust (VSBIT) is pleased to announce Jonathan G. Steiner as its incoming president and CEO, replacing Laura Soares, who retired. Steiner has over 30 years of risk pool experience, 20 in New Hampshire and most recently served as CEO of the Kentucky League of Cities Insurance Trust. He has been a school board member, NH School Boards Association officer, Town Moderator and served on various national boards. His wife, Robin, is Assistant Superintendent of SAU 70, Norwich/Hanover.
Contact: Michael Clark at mclark@gisu.org

Vermont PBS Distance Learning Resources

Vermont PBS, the Vermont Agency of Education and the Vermont Department of Libraries continue to work together to develop easy to access, localized, learning connections for home and school. Go to the Vermont PBS Distance Learning page to see new monthly kits, highlights and recommendations, including resources to help you talk to students about the violence at the U.S. Capitol.
Contact: Heather Duhamel at hduhamel@vermontpbs.org

Educators Presenting Virtual Sessions

Educators from the Slate Valley (VT) Schools, Lyndon (VT) Institute, Upper Valley Educators Institute, the Tarrant Institute at the University of Vermont, Kearsarge (NH) Schools, and Northeastern University will present nine virtual sessions Jan. 25 – Feb. 10, 2021, where educators across Vermont and New Hampshire share efforts they are engaged in and provide a space for everyone to discuss these efforts. Find a description of all of the sessions – being offered Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 3-4 p.m. – on this website: vtnhlearning.weebly.com. Beyond reviewing the sessions on the website, you can register online.
Contact: Casey O’Meara at comeara@svuvt.org

Virtual Webinar Series on Proactive Strategies for Working with Students with Challenging Behaviors

VT-HEC is presenting a 5-part webinar series on Unpacking Behavior: Strategies for Supporting Staff and Students with Behavior Specialist Kristin Beswick. This webinar series will dive into topics and proactive strategies for working with students who present a variety of behaviors and other needs. During each webinar, participants will be presented with new learning, challenges and research-based strategies that can enhance student success and alleviate teacher stress. Each webinar runs from 3 p.m. - 4:30 p.m., with the first webinar being held on Jan. 20, 2021. Participants may register for one or some of the webinars individually, or attend the entire series. For people who cannot attend live, each webinar will be recorded and available for rent at a later date.
Contact: Julie Medose at julie.medose@vthec.org or (802) 498-3350

Resilience in 2021: Live Virtual Workshops and Graduate Course with Joelle van Lent and Gillian Boudreau

VT-HEC is partnering with Joelle van Lent and Gillian Boudrea for a 4-part virtual workshop series and/or graduate course on Resilience in 2021: Using Inspiration and Wisdom from 2020 to Re-Envision Healthy and Adaptive School Communities. Using their decades of experience working within the field of trauma, Gillian and Joelle will examine how 2020 has deepened our understanding of the importance of building communities that promote the resilience of every member of that community, especially those most vulnerable. This training will connect long-held knowledge and research on trauma, the stress response and resilience with new research and clinical experience obtained through the unique adversity presented by the COVID-19 pandemic and the increased awareness of longstanding cultural and school-specific injustice and inequities brought to the forefront by events of 2020. The series begins on Jan. 22, 2021, with options to attend some or all of the workshop days, or to participate for graduate credit.
Contact: Julie Medose at julie.medose@vthec.org or (802) 498-3350

Who's Outside? Building an Anti-Racist Bookshelf (Workshop)

Join the UVM Tarrant Institute's resident librarian Jeanie Phillips and Shelburne Farms place-based educator and professional learning facilitator Aimee Arandia Østensen as we explore how justice and equity show up (or don't) on our classroom bookshelves. We strive for a vision in which all children have meaningful connections to the natural world, but what does our book collection say about who is part of this vision and in what role? Together we'll explore the intentional and unintentional messages about representation, stereotypes and belonging that our bookshelves communicate. Leave with tools and strategies to audit your own bookshelves. Jeanie Phillips, of the UVM Tarrant Institute Jeanie Phillips will join Aimee Arandia Østensen from Shelburne Farms, as hosts. Tuesday, Jan. 19, 4 p.m. EST. Register online.
Contact: Audrey Homan and events@tarrantinstitute.org

Reimagining Education in January with UP for Learning

Please join UP for Learning for one, several or all of our activities and events, and make use of our resources as we come together to focus on reconnecting with one another, reinvigorating our practice and radically reimagining the possibilities for our education system. As we head into week three of this journey, we are focusing on redesigning individual learning spaces and our education system as a whole. Use this link to our January Calendar to access tips on ways to Show Appreciation and Gratitude with Students, read Erubey Lopez’s article What if Every Learner Was Empowered to Choose Their Own Path about his redesigned, personalized learning experience in a Vermont school, and join UP for Learning’s Youth Advisory Council as they share what Vermont students want you to know.
Contact: Harry Frank at harry@upforlearning.org or (802) 989-4913

VSAC’s FAFSA Completion Tool is Available for Use

VSAC’s FAFSA Completion Tool allows high school counselors to check on the completion status of each senior’s FAFSA and Vermont grant application. Log in to your school's MyVSAC account to get started or learn how to use the tool.
Contact: Miranda Roth at roth@vsac.org

Professional Development: Comprehensive Reading and Writing Evaluations Course

Registration is open for Under the Hood: Comprehensive Reading and Writing Evaluations, a professional development course by the Stern Center for Language and Learning beginning March 2, 2021. This interactive course is designed for anyone who wishes to learn more about reading and writing evaluations. The course will focus on issues related to the assessment of reading, spelling and writing, including early identification, the diagnoses of dyslexia and dysgraphia, and the communication of test results to parents and other educators. Participants will learn the language of assessment, how to explain basic concepts of measurement at team meetings and how to develop their own evaluation template for use on a practice case study. Course applications due by Feb. 16, 2021.
Contact: SJ Larkspur at slarkspur@sterncenter.org

Introduction to Zero Suicide in Vermont: Suicide Safe Pathways to Care

Offered on three different dates by VT Suicide Prevention Center under funding from the Vermont Department of Mental Health, this 75-minute webinar describes how systematic suicide care closes gaps for the suicidal person, what is involved in the implementation of a Zero Suicide approach and what resources exist to support this work.
Contact Catherine Diduk at info@healthandlearning.org

Research Opportunity for Vermont LGBTQ+ Educators

TeachOutVT is seeking LGBTQ+ educators to join our core development research team. The mission of TeachOutVT is to create a supportive network of LGBTQ+ educators that is diverse, inclusive, equitable and sustainable. Meetings will be held monthly via Zoom. Please respond by Feb. 1, 2021.
Contact Hannah Miller at Hannah.Miller@NorthernVermont.edu

Free Workshop: Learning From Home? Remote Learning Tips & Tricks for Families and Practitioners

Hosted by Vermont Family Network Jan. 26, 2021 at 3 p.m. - 4 p.m. Families and educators alike have needed to quickly adapt to accessing a remote education environment. Join us for this free workshop as we share practical tips and tricks for both parents and practitioners in navigating and maximizing remote education during the pandemic. Presenters: Meagan Roy, CVSD Director of Student Support Services; Deb Morris, CCC-SLP (CVSD Early Education); and Amy Coach-Dietz, CCC-SLP (Shelburne Community School). Register for this workshop online or, for a complete list of upcoming workshops, please visit the Vermont Family Network’s website.
Contact: Rachel Boyers at rachel.boyers@vtfn.org

Support for Literacy Coaches and Specialists

Partnerships for Literacy and Learning is happy to be providing a 4-session series of Literacy Coaching in our Current World. These 1.25 hour sessions are on Feb. 1, March 22, April 5 and April 26, from 3:30 - 4:45 p.m.
Contact: Mary Grace at info@pllvt.org or (802) 828-0521

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The field memo has time-sensitive and relevant information designed for students, teachers, and staff. The agency encourages principals, headmasters, and superintendents to share the memo with their education community. Additionally, individuals can subscribe or unsubscribe online.

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Questions?

Email Mary.Peterson@vermont.gov, Digital Communications Specialist

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Secretary Daniel M. French
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Montpelier, VT 05620-2501

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