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Weekly Field Memo - Volume 17, Issue 5

February 1, 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.

Vermont Multi-tiered System of Supports Survey Questions 2022-2023 - Early Release and Webinar

Audience: Superintendents and Principals 
Please preview the 2022-2023 Vermont Multi-tiered System of Supports (VTmtss) Survey questions, which have been posted early this year so leaders can consider their data sources and collection methods before the official release of the survey in May 2023. The majority of questions on this year’s survey are the same as the 2021-2022 survey. Leaders can view the VTmtss Survey Webinar to learn more about how the VTmtss Survey Summary Report can be used for improvement planning and how to prepare for the upcoming 2022-2023 VTmtss Survey data collection.
Contact: Caitlin Chisholm at

Press Release: Vermont Agency of Education Recognizes 2023 Presidential Scholars

Audience: all
On Jan. 30, 2023, the Vermont Agency of Education announced Vermont’s Presidential Scholar recipients and honorable mentions for the 2022-2023 school year in a recognition ceremony at the Vermont State House. These outstanding students were selected based on nominations from teachers, administrators and fellow students. Presidential scholars are recognized in three categories; general, arts and career technical education. Read the full Press Release: Vermont Agency of Education Recognizes 2023 Presidential Scholars.
Contact: Lindsey Hedges at

New Alternate Assessment Implementation for SY23

Audience: Superintendents, Principals, Special Education Directors
The AOE has finalized the procurement of a vendor to develop and implement statewide summative alternate assessments of English Language Arts (ELA), math and science. Beginning in the 2022-23 school year, the state will employ new statewide alternate assessments of ELA, math and science developed and implemented with Cognia. The New Alternate Assessment Implementation for SY23 Memo is intended to inform supervisory unions (SU/SDs) and independent schools of the upcoming transition and describe the next steps toward the 2023 administration of the alternate assessment.
Contact: Chris Case at

February Issue of Literary Learning: Vermont’s Newsletter for English Language Arts Educators

Audience: English Teachers, Literacy Coaches
The February issue of the bi-monthly newsletter, Literary Learning, is now available. This issue contains articles about supporting adolescent literacy and the reading/writing connection as well as resources educators can access to support this work. Also included is information about new professional learning opportunities. Be sure to subscribe to the Agency’s ELA listserv in order to stay informed about ELA and literacy in Vermont.
Contact: Emily Leute at

Vermont Public: Resources for Celebrating and Learning About Black History Month

Audience: Curriculum Directors, Principals, PreK-12 Teachers
To help celebrate Black History Month, share this article from PBS Parents Thrive: Teaching Your Child about Black History Month for students in grades PreK-5. Older students can learn about Bessie Coleman in the PBSLM Unladylike Collection. For a local connection, the Brave Little State Podcast series Homegoings includes BIPOC art and perspectives from Vermont teens. Also, check out the Timeline Podcast with Vermont Public’s Classical host, James Stewart, to learn more about the life and music of Scott Joplin, “The King of Ragtime.” Visit the Vermont Public Kids and Education page to find more recommendations for high-quality media and resource collections.
Contacts: Emily Leute at or Heather Duhamel 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: Director of Education Finance - Contact: Bill Bates at and Education Data Analyst II - Temporary - Contact: David Kelley at
Contact: AOE Info at

Resources To Support Youth Vaping Cessation

Audience: All
The My Life, My Quit (MLMQ) program is a free and confidential treatment service offered by the Vermont Department of Health Tobacco Control Program to youth ages 12 - 17 who want help quitting vaping and all other forms of tobacco. School-based professionals can play an important role in promoting vaping and tobacco cessation by sharing the MLMQ program. The program can help students who may not understand the harms of nicotine and tobacco use, or who would like to quit but aren’t sure how. Order free materials for your school today.
Contact: Dana Bourne 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.

Spring Professional Development Course: Gardens & Mindfulness for Educators

Enroll now in Mindfulness Practices to Enhance Science Observation Skills (Spring Tea Project Course). This course is designed for educators to engage in science routines for empowerment and mindfulness routines for social, emotional learning. It will be an immersion in establishing a perennial herb garden from seed and mindfulness skills. Depart with a curriculum designed to approach these topics in the classroom. Adapted for PreK-8 grades. Synchronous class times are on Mondays from 6:30 - 8:15 p.m., Feb 13-June 2, 2023. Learn more about The Tea Project or register for the course.
Contact: Angie Barger at or (802) 595-2512

Backwards Design for Deeper Learning: An Online Graduate Course

Registration is open for a new Castleton University Center for Schools’ course titled Backwards Design for Deeper Learning with Devin Schrock, M.S. This three-credit graduate course will be held fully online from March 5 – May 7, 2023. The course will build on Grant Wiggins’ and Jay McTighe’s Understanding by Design approach to backwards planning. Participants in this course will further deepen their own understanding of this design process and will build a meaningful and aligned unit to implement in their own classrooms. Register on Castleton's Continuing Education and Graduate Courses webpage.
Contact: Tara Lidstone at or (802) 345-0092

Virtual Event with “March Trilogy” Author

Don’t miss your chance to register your class for a special free virtual event with National Book Award-winning author Andrew Aydin on Thursday, Feb. 9 at 10 a.m. Aydin is the co-author of The March Trilogy with the late Congressman John Lewis. Aydin will discuss with a panel of Vermont high school students his experiences becoming an author and working with Congressman Lewis. You can register once for an entire class and then project the event during class time; the students do not need to register individually. Register using our short online form.
Contact: Ryan Newswanger at

Unified Scholarship Application Deadline - Feb. 15, 2023

The Vermont Student Assistance Corporation (VSAC) administers more than 120 scholarships available to Vermont residents. Scholarships are offered by many different groups, organizations and even individuals. They're offered for all kinds of attributes—and to all kinds of students. Students attending college for the 2023-2024 academic year can apply for multiple scholarships using a single form, the Unified Scholarship Application (USA). The USA and all supporting documents must be postmarked, or uploaded to VSAC, on or before Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2023.
Contact: Serena Peck at

All Learners Network Math Professional Development: Math Menu

Math Menu is a free six-hour workshop offered in person at the All Learners Network Learning Center in Burlington on March 2, 2023, from 9 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. There will also be a virtual class offered on Zoom on March 7, 2023, from 8 - 11 a.m. and 1 - 4 p.m. This workshop focuses on building teacher pedagogical knowledge about effective practices for mathematics teaching and learning using the Math Menu framework as an effective practice for differentiating and enhancing mathematics instruction to meet the needs of all learners.
Contact: TJ Jemison at

Professional Development: Leveraging the Power of Purpose and Belonging for Student and Teacher Engagement

Join central Vermont native Tim Klein, educator and author, in this special two-day virtual event, Leveraging the Power of Purpose and Belonging, beginning on Feb. 8, 2023. People thrive when they feel they belong and see a way to pursue their purpose. This workshop series is for educators who want to learn more about new, evidence-based best practices that improve well-being, academic engagement and mental health of the school community.
Contact: Julie Medose at or (802) 498-3350

Partnerships for Literacy and Learning: Adolescent Literacy Partnerships NEXIS

Adolescent students often arrive at middle and high school with a complex literacy background, and differentiating instruction to meet the needs of these students is essential. These seven virtual sessions begin on March 16, 2023, from 3:30 - 5:30 p.m. Come as a team or literacy partners (interventionist and universal level partners). Participants will work to understand and define the necessary collaborations between intervention and universal instruction. Details are on Partnerships for Literacy and Learning’s professional learning webpage.
Contact: Mary Grace at or (802) 828-0521

Umatter Suicide Prevention Awareness and Skills March

Join the Center for Health and Learning's Umatter Suicide Prevention Awareness and Skills Training on March 7, 2023, at 10 a.m. for a 90-minute virtual live session. This session is structured to enhance knowledge, comfort and skills to identify those at risk for suicide in your organization or community, including resources to get help. Umatter Suicide Prevention Awareness and Skills Training provides the fundamental knowledge to build a suicide prevention-aware community or workplace. Visit the Umatter course registration page to register for free or low-cost training opportunities offered by the VT Suicide Prevention Center, a CHL program supported by Facing Suicide VT.
Contact: Karen Carreira at

Professional Learning: Adolescent Intervention Teams

Registration is open for Developing a System for School-wide Adolescent Literacy Intervention and Supports. Dr. Sarah Lupo will present to leadership teams, EST teams, Data Teams, Intervention and Coaching Teams and Teaching Teams at The Hampton Event Center in Colchester on May 9, 2023. Teams will each have their own 30-minute virtual consultation with Dr. Lupo in late May or early June to review their specific plans around intervention systems and school-wide supports.
Contact: Lauren Wooden at or (802) 497-1642

Earn a Teaching License or Additional Endorsement and Master's Degree in One Year

Saint Michael’s College (SMC) is offering a competitively priced Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) program that provides both one- and two-year options. The MAT offers initial licensure tracks in art, elementary, middle, secondary and special education. For licensed teachers, the MAT offers additional endorsements in special education and ELL. Accepting applications now for Summer '23 enrollment. For more information, please go to the SMC website.
Contact: Claudine Bedell at or (802) 654-2741

U.S. Committee for Ukrainian Holodomor-Genocide Awareness: Student Competition

In commemoration of the 90th anniversary of the Holodomor in Ukraine, the U.S. Committee for Holodomor Genocide Awareness, based in Washington, D.C., invites high school students to participate in a nationwide competition. Submissions are due by April 7, 2023. Winners will be announced in the spring of 2023. Cash prizes are $1000, $500 and $300. Judges are qualified educators from across the nation, including principals and professors.
Contact: Ivanna M. Kerod Reed at

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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.

Questions? Email Nichole Barnes at