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 38

28 September 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.

Updated Advisory Memo: COVID-19 Prevention Measures for Fall 2021

The Advisory Memo: COVID-19 Prevention Measures for Fall 2021 has been updated to include the extension of universal masking, regardless of vaccination rates, until November 1, 2021.
Contact: Ted Fisher at ted.fisher@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.

Civic Education Opportunity: We the People

Audience: Superintendents, Curriculum Directors, High School Principals, High School Teachers
The Agency of Education is interested in supporting SU/SDs that are considering complementing their regular high school curriculum by providing students an innovative course of instruction on the history and principles of U.S. constitutional democracy through the Center for Civic Education’s We the People program. We the People allows students to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of constitutional principles and have opportunities to evaluate, take and defend positions on relevant historical and contemporary issues as they ‘testify’ in simulated Congressional hearings. If your high school is interested in utilizing the program to allow your students to compete at the state, and if selected, the national level, please submit an email to Martha Deiss, as we are trying to gauge the level of interest and potential capacity to have a state-level competition. Please respond by October 11, 2021.
Contact: Martha Deiss at martha.deiss@vermont.gov

Q&A: Special Education Monitoring Submissions - Due by January 15, 2022

Audience: Special Education Directors and District Staff for Monitoring Submissions
Q&A session on the next Special Education Monitoring submissions that are due by January 15, 2022 will be held on December 15, 2021, 9 - 10 A.M. This event is open to “all” and “new” Special Education Directors and district staff involved in Special Education monitoring submissions. Attendance is strongly encouraged. More information on how to join this session can be found online. This event will not be recorded.
Contact: Simona Kragh at simona.kragh@vermont.gov

Special Education Rule Changes Resource Website

Audience: Everyone
In order to support the implementation of Act 173, and in particular, the special education rule changes scheduled to take effect in July of 2022, the Agency of Education, and Student Supports Division is offering a series of upcoming supports. The Special Education Rule Changes website offers a schedule of events, resources and contact information for questions regarding the implementation of the rule changes. It is continually updated so please visit for the most up to date information.
Contact: Chris Kane, Assistant Director of Special Education, at christopher.kane@vermont.gov

Vermont PBS: Kids and Education October Resources to Celebrate Fall

Audience: Curriculum Directors, Principals, PreK-12 Teachers
The Vermont Agency of Education and Vermont PBS have compiled Vermont PBS Kids and Education: October 2021, which includes resources for educators, organized by grade band and subject area. Visit the Vermont PBS Kids and Education page to find more online and printable resources. For more resources and information about the partnership between the Vermont Agency of Education and Vermont PBS, visit the AOE’s Vermont PBS webpage. To share resources and network with colleagues, join the Vermont PBS Educational Resources group on Edmodo. Activate your Edmodo account and join the VTED Learns community by filling out this form.
Contacts: Emily Leute at emily.leute@vermont.gov or Heather Duhamel at hduhamel@vermontpbs.org

Annual Education Technology Survey

Audience: Education Technology Directors, Superintendents
The Annual Technology Survey is required of all Vermont schools to collect important data about many aspects of the education technology landscape in our schools. The survey is now open and the deadline to respond is September 30, 2021. The AOE requests that the survey be answered to the best of the ability of each school. The survey is structured to enable a supervisory union or school district representative to complete data for multiple schools in one form. This information is used by legislators, as well as state and local policymakers and may be referenced in both state and national press with regards to Vermont’s status around education technology. Please complete the Annual Technology Survey, through a link located on the AOE Education Technology web page, by September 30, 2021.
Contact: Lisa Helme at lisa.helme@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.

Partner with SPIRAL International To Host an Arabic or Chinese Teacher in Your School

SPIRAL International and American Councils for International Education are offering the exciting opportunity to host a fully-funded Arabic or Chinese teacher in your school. The Teachers of Critical Languages Program makes it easy for U.S. schools to start or grow an Arabic or Chinese program by placing teachers from China, Egypt, or Morocco for a full academic year; schools can also choose to apply for additional years. SPIRAL International will guide your school through the process and provide critical community support and outreach. Please reach out by October 5, 2021 for more information.
Contact Sydney Estey-Dedell at programs@spiralinternational.org

Ninth Annual Computer Science Fair

UVM Computer Science department is holding the Ninth Annual Computer Science Fair on December 10, 2021 from 1:10 P.M. to 4:20 P.M. It is a great opportunity for high schoolers around the state to come and see firsthand what college students at UVM work on from freshman to senior level classes. Email how many students are planning on coming and we will try to save some CS Fair t-shirts (sizes not guaranteed).
Contact: Bob Erickson at rerickso@uvm.edu

Professional Education: Instructional Coaching Courses

Registration is open for both Instructional Coaching and Mentoring and Coaching for Equity at the Upper Valley Educators Institute. In Instructional Coaching, educators will learn and practice how to observe instruction, structure coaching conversations, and use effective language to help teachers reflect and improve. Coaching for Equity is designed for educators who put equity issues on the table: raising awareness in the minds of novice teachers, asking courageous questions, and modeling continuous confrontation of the complex issues of difference that are central to our schools and society. Both courses begin in January of 2022. Learn more or register here.
Contact: Kristen Downey at kristendowney@uvei.org or (603) 678-4888.

Intervention Workshop for Interventionists and K-4 Teachers

The Intervention Workshop for Interventionists and K-4 Teachers is a full day, in person workshop on October 15, 2021. The All Learners Network has been getting lots of inquiries about how to support students who have gaps in their learning opportunities. Dr. John Tapper will facilitate a workshop on intervention that includes: a complete process for assessing intervention need and providing services, templates for using the HLCs and progressions to guide intervention goals and a variety of student-friendly, effective activities for intervention at each grade level.
Contact: TJ Jemison at communicationsdirector@alllearnersnetwork.com

2021 All Learners Network Annual Conference

The 2021 All Learners Network Annual Conference will be from 3:30 - 5:30 P.M. on Oct. 14, Nov. 11 and Dec. 8, 2021 (one registration for all 3 dates). Our Conference will be spread over three afternoon sessions this year. Each day will have a keynote kick off with All Learners Networks' own Dr. John Tapper and then a selection of sessions to choose from with facilitators from the All Learners Network, Vermont teachers, and a special guest from California! This conference is supported by the VT AOE and is free for participants.
Contact: TJ Jemison at communicationsdirector@alllearnersnetwork.com

Additional Section Added of “Implementing VTmtss for Student and School Success”

Partnerships for Literacy and Learning has had such a high demand for our “Implementing VTmtss for Student and School Success NEXIS '' that we’ve added a new section. We’ll start the new 6-session series on Oct. 27, 2021, using VT AOE tools and resources. This is intended to support Vermont’s multi-tiered system of support (VTmtss) coordinators and/or team members from across the state as they work to implement the VTmtss framework in their schools and districts. To learn more about dates and times for this second section visit our webpage
Contact: info@pllvt.org or Mary Grace at 802.828.0521

VSAC's Annual Financial Aid Trainings

Were you unable to attend the live virtual presentations on September 14 or 23, 2021? The recordings and presentation materials are available on VSAC's News for Educational Professionals and Financial Aid Resources pages.
Contact: Christopher Barry at barry@vsac.org.

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

Zero Suicide is a set of evidence-based principles and practices for preventing suicide within health and mental health systems. The foundational belief of Zero Suicide is that suicide deaths for individuals under care are preventable. Zero Suicide requires a system-wide approach to improve outcomes and close gaps. This webinar on October 15, 2021 from 9 - 10 A.M. 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

Umatter for Youth and Young Adults

Umatter® for Youth and Young Adults is a youth leadership and engagement initiative that includes interactive training, design and implementation of a Community Action Project (CAP) in their school community, and presentation of CAP at an event with their peers. Core content and skills development includes: changing mindset, assessing personal strengths, building resiliency, strategies to cope with stress, self-care, recognizing signs of distress in self and others, how to reach out for help and how to help a friend. Groups of 8 youth ages 12-22 with 2 adult facilitators are encouraged to register for this year’s program beginning December 8, 2021.
Contact Catherine Diduk at info@healthandlearning.org

Professional Development Course: Mindfulness & Sustainability

The Tea Project Course 1: Mindfulness in the Daily Cup of Tea, is a graduate level virtual course for PreK-8 grade teachers who develop a sustainable school herb garden, wild schoolyard and outdoor classroom plant literacy and mindfulness practices within their classroom and school. NGSS, Common Core and SEL standards build the foundation of an experiential curriculum that addresses this essential question: While utilizing mindfulness practices, how do we invite our students to form a culture of knowledge from seed to belly? When we learn to identify and grow the wild plants that help our human bodies to flourish, we become empowered through the very first human language of literacy: plant identification. The course begins on October 4, 2021, and meets on Mondays in synchronous Zoom sessions from 6:30-8:15 p.m. Reserve your spot in our Fall cohort here.
Contact: Angie Barger at luna-root@gmail.com or (802) 595-2512

Vermont History Day State Contest Materials Now Available

The National History Day (NHD) program engages students in historical research and skills development. Vermont students in grades 5-12 are encouraged to create projects for the Vermont History Day State Contest which is scheduled for April 2, 2022 at the UVM Davis Center in Burlington (pending COVID-19 conditions in the spring). Winners qualify for the national contest. Curriculum materials are available from the Vermont Historical Society. Projects can be about any topic in history (not just Vermont history) related to the annual theme of “Debate & Diplomacy in History: Successes, Failures, Consequences.” Learn more at the Introduction to NHD and Theme workshop on Wednesday, October 6, 2021 from 4-5 P.M. on Zoom. More information is available on our event webpage.
Contact: Victoria Hughes at victoria.hughes@vermonthistory.org

Professional Development: Wilson Reading System® Level 1 Certification Program

Registration is open for Wilson Reading System® Level 1 Certification Program, which begins November 2, 2021, a professional development workshop by the Stern Center for Language and Learning. The course provides practical application of reading research, with particular emphasis on phonological awareness, phonics and spelling at the beginning levels of decoding and encoding. Visit our registration page to register.
Contact: SJ Larkspur at slarkspur@sterncenter.org

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Secretary Daniel M. French
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Montpelier, VT 05620-2501

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