Skip to main content

Volume 16, Issue 43

October 26, 2022

Agency of Education, State of Vermont and Federal Updates

This section of the Weekly Field Memo contains posts from the Agency of Education, other State of Vermont agencies, federal agencies or Vermont's congressional delegation.

Alert Families to Free Internet through Affordable Connectivity Program

Audience: All
Help out families in your school community that may be finding it difficult to pay for internet by pointing them to the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP). This federal program provides a discount of up to $30 per month toward internet service for eligible households. Some Vermont companies are even offering free internet service for people claiming the ACP. If you are aware of families that would have participated in the free and reduced-price school lunch program, they would qualify for this benefit. The Department of Public Service has information on how families can sign up for the program. If you’d like to send out a notice or post the information on your school website, the Education Superhighway provides free flyers for you to use.  Also, on the United States Department of Education - Office of Educational Technology program page is a helpful eligibility verification letter template for students and their families. 
Contact: Lisa Helme at lisa.helme@vermont.gov 

Nominations for Presidential Scholars (Reminder)

Audience: Students, Principals, Guidance Counselors, Academic, Arts and CTE Teachers, CTE Center Directors 
The Vermont Presidential Scholars Program recognizes students for academic success, artistic and technical excellence, community service and leadership. Scholars are chosen in three different categories: general - for high school seniors, the arts - for grades 10–12, and career technical education (CTE) - for high school seniors currently enrolled in a state-approved CTE program. Outstanding students are selected based on nominations from teachers and administrators. Students in some categories may also nominate themselves, and those selected in the general and CTE categories will be invited to apply to the U.S. Presidential Scholars Program. The deadline for nominations is Nov. 11, 2022. Only nominations submitted via electronic applications will be accepted. You can find all necessary forms and additional information online on the Awards and Recognition - Presidential Scholars webpage.
Contact: Ryan Parkman at ryan.parkman@vermont.gov

ARP ESSER Afterschool Round Two Grant Application

Audience: All
The ARP-ESSER Afterschool Round Two Grant Application is coming to the Grants Management System. This $822,000 grant program is a follow-up to the ARP ESSER Afterschool Set Aside application that ran during Summer 2022. There are two funding pathways, one for program development, expansion and/or capacity building and one to develop a new comprehensive afterschool center. All LEAs will be eligible to apply. More information is available in the ARP ESSER Set-Aside Fund for Application Planning Guide. Applications will be due Jan. 4, 2023, and awards will be announced on Feb. 1, 2023. Interested parties can sign up on our non-binding contact form to receive updated information about training and technical assistance in the coming months.
Contact: Johannes Haensch at johannes.haensch@vermont.gov or (802) 828-7135

ARP ESSER Summer Grant Application

Audience: All
The ARP-ESSER Summer Grant Application is coming in the Grants Management System. This $2.8 million grant program is a part of the AOE's larger education recovery and revitalization work. Funding is available for the creation of new or the expansion of existing summer programs. All LEAs will be eligible to apply. More information is available in the ARP ESSER Set-Aside Fund for Application Planning Guide. Applications will be due Jan. 4, 2023, and awards will be announced on Feb. 1, 2023. Interested parties can sign up on our non-binding contact form to receive updated information about training and technical assistance in the coming months.
Contact: Johannes Haensch at johannes.haensch@vermont.gov or (802) 828-7135

Agency of Education Open Positions

Audience: All
The Vermont Agency of Education has open positions that are available to both state employees and external applicants. Open positions are: Programs Coordinator I -Science Specialist - Contact: Pat Fitzsimmons at pat.fitzsimmons@vermont.govEducation Division Director - Data Management & Analysis Division - Contact: Courtney O'Brien at courtney.obrien@vermont.govSafe Schools Project Manager - Contact: Courtney O'Brien at courtney.obrien@vermont.govEducation Quality Assurance Coordinator - Contact: Josh Souliere at josh.souliere@vermont.gov and Education Assistant Division Director - Contact: Anne Bordonaro at anne.bordonaro@vermont.gov.
Contact: AOE Info at aoe.edinfo@vermont.gov

Vermont Public: October Resources to Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month

Audience: Curriculum Directors, Principals, PreK-12 Teachers
The Vermont Agency of Education and Vermont Public continue our partnership to meet the anywhere, anytime, educational, social and emotional needs of Vermont students. Visit the Vermont Public Kids and Education page to find recommendations for high-quality media and resource collections, including the new PBS Kids C3 connected series, Rosie’s Rules. Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month in the classroom with this booklist, or check out the lessons and media gallery for Let’s Go Luna, along with Incorporating Let’s Go Luna into Your Classroom and Let’s Go Luna Resources and Episode Specific Activities. Listen to But Why Podcast talk about Words and Language with linguist guest John McWhorter. Find more Spanish resources for PreK-Grade 3 at PBS Parents. For older students, check out the Timeline Podcast Composer Maria Grever. For a Vermont connection, listen to Brave Little State Podcast’s What Is It Like to Be a Migrant Worker in Vermont? Also, don’t forget to visit the Education Ambassadors page to learn more about how Vermont educators are involved in our partnership.
Contacts: Emily Leute at emily.leute@vermont.gov or Heather Duhamel at hduhamel@vermontpbs.org


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.

Dairy Grant Opportunity for School Meals

New England Dairy is pleased to announce a funding opportunity from New England Dairy Farmers to eligible schools in Vermont to support food service needs related to expanding school meal programs or serving new dairy menu items like smoothies or hot chocolate milk. New for 2022: schools can apply for our turn-key smoothie kit. Learn more and apply on New England Dairy’s School Meals webpage. Deadline to apply is Dec. 16, 2022.
Contact: Jill Hussels at jhussels@newenglanddairy.com

Vermont Family Network Free Workshop: “Equitable and Inclusive Environments for Every Family: Stopping the Suspension and Expulsion of Preschoolers in Vermont”

The workshop, Equitable and Inclusive Environments for Every Family: Stopping the Suspension and Expulsion of Preschoolers in Vermont, will be held on Nov. 2, 2022, from 1-2 p.m. It will focus on why there is a national focus on the suspension and expulsion of young children, what suspension and expulsion may look like in preschool, how Vermont’s new suspension and expulsion law impacts children in a preschool setting, and current information and resources for families to support their child in inclusive preschool settings. Presenters: Katie McCarthy, Early Childhood Special Education Coordinator and Amy Murphy, Early Education Inclusion Coordinator, both from the Agency of Education Early Education Team.
Contact: Rachel Boyers at rachel.boyers@vtfn.org

Workforce Development Funding Deadlines are Approaching

Vermont Student Assistance Corporation (VSAC), in partnership with other Vermont agencies, offers grants and interest-free forgivable loans that will reduce or eliminate tuition for eligible students pursuing careers in critical fields. Critical fields include skilled trades, early childhood education, nursing, mental health care and more. Learn more on the VSAC Workforce webpage.
Contact: Maryanne DePresco at depresco@vsac.org

All Learners Network Math Professional Development

Universal Design for Learning (UDL) and Math Workshop is a three-hour workshop offered on Nov. 7, 2022, from 3:30-6:30 p.m., virtually on Zoom. UDL posits flexible pathways with firm goals. We need to consider the universal accommodations and tools we are providing for students to learn mathematics and demonstrate their understanding. Considering the high-priority math concepts a student needs from previous grades helps to accurately scaffold new learning so that all students can experience affirming math learning at their grade level.
Contact: TJ Jemison at communicationsdirector@alllearnersnetwork.com

November Umatter Suicide Prevention Awareness Training

Join the Center for Health and Learning for a no-cost suicide awareness training on Nov. 8, 2022, from 10-11:30 a.m. Enhance knowledge, comfort and skills to identify those at risk for suicide in your organization or community, including resources. Register online on the Umatter Suicide Prevention Awareness and Skills Training registration page.
Contact: Karen Carreira at karen@healthandlearning.org

Vermont Alliance for Social Studies Annual Conference

Register now for the 28th Annual Vermont Alliance for the Social Studies Conference: Imagining the 250th and Beyond, being held in person on Wednesday, Dec. 7, 2022, at the Capitol Plaza Hotel in Montpelier, Vermont. See the conference schedule, flyer and brochure for a more complete description of the keynote and workshop sessions designed and facilitated by Vermont educators, as well as local and national presenters. Register for the conference on Eventbrite by card for $135. Purchase order for $150 payable to “VASS” option is available. The conference includes continental breakfast, lunch and parking. Vendor registration is available on the Eventbrite site.
Contact: Ron Eisenman at vtalliancess@gmail.com

Seeking Classrooms for Food Systems Feed Us: Farm to Table Curriculum

The 4-H North East Collaborative has space for two classrooms of fifteen students each to participate in the program in late Nov. and Dec. 2022. The grade range for this curriculum is 2-4 and the program provides all the materials for students to engage in a hands-on learning experience that explores the many steps that food goes through from farm to table. The program is delivered by a 4-H mentor from the University of Maine who virtually joins into the classroom to lead activities and discussions.
Contact: Allison Smith at allison.smith.2@uvm.edu

Vermont Destination Imagination Events

Are you going to the Vermont Afterschool Conference on Friday, Oct. 28, 2022? Find out how Destination Imagination (DI) does Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math (STEAM). Try some instant challenges at our “STEAM on a Team” workshops, visit our information display and enter the free raffle to win a DI team membership. On Sunday, Nov. 6, 2022, from 11 a.m.-3 p.m., please join us at ECHO Leahy Center for Lake Champlain where Vermont Destination Imagination will have a variety of creative STEAM activities, free with ECHO admission or membership. Fun for all ages!
Contact: Jane Youngbaer at vtdicreativity@gmail.com or (802) 272-2766

Workshop: Understanding Dyslexia with Dr. Melissa Farrall

Join the Stern Center for Language and Learning for our Nov. 15, 2022, literacy workshop, which focuses on dyslexia—the most common cause of difficulty with reading, spelling and written expression. In the workshop, Dr. Farrall will review the defining features of dyslexia, early signs of risk, how it is assessed and what educators can do to ensure that all children learn to read. You will leave this workshop with an understanding of how reading develops, as well as the root cause of most reading problems and how to increase student literacy in the classroom and society at large.
Contact: Peter McDonald at pmcdonald@sterncenter.org

Becoming an Antiracist Educator: An Online Graduate Course

Registration is still open for the upcoming Castleton University Center for Schools’ course Becoming an Antiracist Educator with Dr. Ben White. The course, which begins on Nov. 21, 2022, will be held fully online and is open to educators PreK-12. Registrants in this three-credit course will thoroughly explore white privilege, implicit bias and equity through research, as well as courageous online discussions moving educational practice towards that of an antiracist. This course focuses on leveraging classroom libraries to help foster a foundation for developing an antiracist climate through intentional conversations and exposure to diverse literature representations. Register on Castleton's Continuing Education and Graduate Courses webpage.
Contact: Tara Lidstone at cfs@castleton.edu or (802) 345-0092

Partnerships for Literacy and Learning offers “Reenergizing Your Workshop”

In light of the current research on evidence-based instruction, participants in the Reenergizing Your Workshop course will review the workshop with an increased focus on student engagement and motivation. This cohort will meet six times from Jan.-May 2023, creating a strong support network for teachers of all experiences. Join Gayle Moskowitz, Sarah Blake and Deborah Boucher in these sessions that will help you support your students from the first session to the last. Find more details about this opportunity on the Reenergizing Your Workshop registration page.
Contact: Mary Grace at info@pllvt.org or (802) 828-0521


Subscribe Online

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.

Questions? Email Nichole Barnes at nichole.barnes@vermont.gov.