Skip to main content

Weekly Field Memo - Volume 17, Issue 2

January 11, 2023

Agency of Education, State of Vermont and Federal Updates

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

Indicator 13: Focused Open Office Hours

Audience: Superintendents, Special Ed Administrators
Indicator 13: Focused Open Office Hours is an opportunity for members of the field to attend a group session for questions and answers about Post-Secondary Transition Plans (Indicator 13), including support from John Spinney and Kat Pfannenstiel. This event will be held on Friday, Jan. 13, 2023, from 9-10 a.m. Please join us by using this Microsoft Teams link, or by calling (802) 828-7667, Phone Conference ID: 795 419 259#.
Contact: Tristan McNamara at

Vermont Public: Student Podcast Challenge

Audience: Curriculum Directors, Principals, PreK-12 Teachers
Calling all grade 5-12 teachers who have students interested in podcasting! NPR will begin collecting submissions for their annual Student Podcast Challenge on Jan. 6, 2023. Teacher involvement is required. Use this guide to find podcasting tips or access NPR’s Student Podcast toolkit. The deadline for submissions is April 28, 2023. Visit the Vermont Public Kids and Education page to find more recommendations for high-quality media and resource collections from the Vermont Agency of Education and Vermont Public partnership. 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 or Heather Duhamel at

Family Engagement Networking Series

Audience: Family Engagement Personnel, Administrators 
Please join the Agency of Education’s Vermont Multi-tiered System of Supports (VTmtss) team for a monthly Family Engagement Networking Series. The next Family Engagement Networking Session will be held on Jan. 19, 2023, from 1-2 p.m. Authentic Partnership with Families Including Meetings will be the focus. These are informal monthly, one-hour virtual sessions for family engagement colleagues to connect, hear updates and discuss problems of practice regarding family engagement. Save the dates for future Family Engagement Networking Sessions which will be held every third Thursday from 1-2 p.m.  
Contact: Nancy Hellen at

Growing Works of Art Contest

Audience: Vermont Students Grades K-8
The Vermont Dept. of Forests, Parks and Recreation is celebrating Arbor Day, a day to appreciate trees and the difference they make in our lives. We invite students to celebrate by creating a piece of art and writing. This year, the contest theme is “Branching out!” One winner from each grade (K-8) will be featured on the WCAX television show “Across the Fence” and receive a state park pass ($90 value). Entries are due March 10, 2023. For more information visit the Growing Works of Art Contest webpage.
Contact: Rebecca Roy at or (802) 522-0780

The Vermont Framework for Proficiency

Audience: Superintendents, Curriculum Directors, Principals, K-12 Educators
The AOE is excited to announce that it has awarded a contract to Great Schools Partnership (GSP) to further the development and implementation of the AOE’s draft Vermont Framework for Proficiency. During the 2022-2023 school year, the AOE in collaboration with GSP will support the development of local Portraits of a Graduate aligned to the state model, facilitate refinements to the Personalized Learning Planning process, and gather feedback on revised Proficiency-Based Graduation Requirements. To learn more and to register, please see this informational flyer. Registration closes on Jan. 31, 2023.
Contact: Pat Fitzsimmons at

Benchmark Assessment Grant Application

Audience: Superintendents, Curriculum Directors, Principals, Instructional Coaches
The application for the ARP ESSER Benchmark Assessment Grant for Vermont LEAs is available in the Grant Management System. Applications are due on Jan. 17, 2023. Additional information about the grant can be found online on the grant document webpage. A FAQ document is also available online. Completion of the SY22-23 Universal Screener, Interim or Benchmark Census is a requirement. The purpose of this survey is to gather information on the type(s) of assessments SU/SDs are using in English Language Arts, mathematics and Next Generation Science Standards.
Contact: Pat Fitzsimmons at

Civic Literacy Grant Opportunity - Round Two

Audience: Superintendents, Curriculum Directors, Social Studies, ELA and/or Interdisciplinary Educators
The Agency of Education is re-offering an abbreviated, competitive Civic Literacy Grant opportunity to Supervisory Unions/Supervisory Districts. This is to complement and/or amplify their existing secondary school curricula through an innovative learning opportunity on the history and principles of U.S. constitutional democracy as evidenced through voting. Successful applicants will receive funds for the purchase of "Our Unfinished March" written by former United States Attorney General Eric Holder. The funds will also go to support student participation in an event at The Flynn Center for the Performing Arts on May 16, 2023, where they will hear from and talk with Mr. Holder. Educators can access a complimentary digital review copy of the book by contacting Cheryl Westberg at Penguin Random House at
Contact: Martha Deiss at

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. Positions are: Education Programs Coordinator I - Math Specialist - Contact: Pat Fitzsimmons at pat.fitzsimmons@vermont.govAssessment & Accountability Director - Contact: Amanda Gorham at and Education Assistant Division Director - Student Pathways - Contact: Jess DeCarolis at
Contact: AOE Info at

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.

2023-2024 Financial Aid Applications Available Online

Remind students that now is the perfect time to complete the 2023-2024 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), Vermont Grant application and Unified Scholarship Application (USA). All applications can be completed online by visiting the Vermont Student Assistance Corporation financial aid options webpage.
Contact: Miranda Roth at

Vermont Family Network Free Workshop: Learn, Earn, and Prosper: Opportunities for Blind and Visually Impaired Youth in Vermont

The workshop, Learn, Earn, and Prosper (LEAP): Opportunities for Blind and Visually Impaired Youth in Vermont, will be held on Jan. 19, 2023, from 10-11 a.m. The workshop will discuss work experiences and personal-professional development for blind and visually impaired youth. Learn about the process of referrals and applications for programs, the variety of virtual and in-person opportunities, how work experiences, retreats, residential programming, and skill-based workshops work and how different students and abilities benefit from different options. A panel of LEAP students will also tell their own stories. Presenters: Sarah Kirby - LEAP Program Coordinator, Hannah Peach - LEAP Virtual Program Developer, and Taya Tarr - Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor with the Vermont Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired.
Contact: Rachel Boyers at

All Learners Network Math Professional Development: Launch/Number Sense Routines

Launch/Number Sense Routines is a six-hour workshop offered in person at the All Learners Network (ALN) Learning Center in Burlington on Feb. 19, 2023, from 9 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. In this workshop participants will reimagine how they use the first five to fifteen minutes of their math block for purposeful, discussion-rich number sense routines in their classroom. Launch, the first component of the ALN lesson approach, is a powerful routine which is amplified through consistent exposure over time. Through intentional problem selection, teachers encourage students to own the conversation and their learning.
Contact: TJ Jemison at

Vermont Principals' Association Winter Update on Professional Learning

The Vermont Principals' Association recently published the Winter Update on Professional Learning & Support Offerings. In the update you can review the new Hub view of the options available to educators, including a new book group offering "The Practice of Groundedness, a Q&A for Aspiring School Leaders" and much more.
Contact: Mike McRaith at

Register Your School for Junior Iron Chef Vermont Competition

Registrations are now being accepted from Vermont schools and afterschool programs for teams of 6-12 graders for the 15th Annual Junior Iron Chef Vermont (Jr Iron Chef VT) competition on March 11, 2023. Jr Iron Chef VT is a career exploration program and competition that teaches communication, teamwork and problem-solving skills by empowering Vermont youth to create locally sourced meals that promote Vermont’s Farm to School efforts. Please register your school's Jr Iron Chef VT teams before the Jan. 20, 2023 deadline. Registration is first-come, first served and capped at 70 teams.
Contact: Becky Wilcke at

Discover Engineering Open to All in Grades 5-12

Discover Engineering is a free annual event for youth in grades 5-12 who want to learn about engineering, build skills and network with engineering students, faculty and professionals. This hallmark event of University of Vermont’s College of Engineering and Mathematical Sciences and Vermont 4-H will happen on Saturday, Feb. 18, 2023, at the University of Vermont. Meet engineering professionals to learn about different kinds of engineering and career pathways and participate in hands-on skill-building workshops. Learn more and register here by Feb. 8, 2023. Lunch will be provided. We welcome all youth in grades 5-12.
Contact: Lauren Traister at or (802) 888-4972, ext. 402

Professional Learning: C-3 Social Studies Framework

Registration is open for Using Inquiry-Based Teaching to Promote Justice and Combat Inequity with Dr. Kathy Swan. This two-day workshop will help educators in grades 5-12 develop a coherent and holistic approach to inquiry-based social studies. Dr. Swan, the C-3 lead author, will show how teachers can pose expansive questions that promote justice and expose students to sources that demonstrate the ways in which history is framed by both oppression and resistance. The workshop will be held at the Delta Conference Center in South Burlington on April 18-19, 2023.
Contact: Lauren Wooden at or (802) 497-1642

Supporting Diverse Learners: A New Webinar Series with Dr. Melissa Farrall

Join nationally recognized assessment expert, Dr. Melissa Farrall, for a series of workshops developed especially for general and special educators in Vermont districts. Learn practical strategies for building thriving and effective multi-tiered systems of support and gain the background knowledge you need to prepare for education changes related to Act 173. Develop your capacity to assess student strengths and weaknesses, determine interventions, understand how to link assessment data to instruction and boost the effectiveness of collaborating teams. The “Why Some Students Have Difficulty Learning” series begins Jan. 31, 2023, and will run from 4–5:30 p.m.
Contact: Julia Caminiti at

Professional Development with Joelle van Lent and Gillian Boudreau: Trauma-Responsive School Practices

Shifting Perspective in 2023 begins Jan. 27, 2023, in Burlington or online. Choose a two-day or four-day workshop series option with a graduate course also available. You can attend in person or remotely. The series addresses the importance of building trauma-responsive, resilient school communities so that students and educators can move from fear to connection. The presenters will highlight key strategies that support a community’s capacity to thrive within adversity. They will pay particular attention to how to foster well-being – as well as the ability to respond in a healthy and discerning way to challenges - of those who work in schools.
Contact: Julie Medose at or (802) 498-3350

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