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Weekly Field Memo - Volume 17, Issue 39

November 1, 2023


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

Contents: November 1, 2023

Indicator 11 and IEP Timelines Training for Special Education Teachers

Audience: Special Educators, Special Education Directors
Registration for an Indicator 11 and IEP Timelines Training for Special Education Teachers is now available. Please be certain to register for this event to receive a link to the training. This training will be offered at three different times: November 2 from 8 to 9 a.m., November 8 from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., and November 13 from 2 to 3 p.m. Participants will increase their understanding of timeline requirements under IDEA, indicator 11, and forms used for initial evaluations and reevaluations.
Contact: Cassie Santo,   

Launch of Second Literacy Professional Learning Module 

Audience: All Educators and Administrators 
Mark your calendars for the launch of the second module in AOE’s new asynchronous literacy learning series. Module 2 "Exploring Language and Phonology" for K-3 and 4-12 grade bands will launch on November 17. Register for the full series, Building a Strong Foundation for Lifelong Literacy Success, and begin taking the first module "Understanding the Neuroscience of Reading" today. Each module takes 6-8 hours to complete, and you can download a certificate of completion at the end of each module.  
Contact: Emily Lesh,

Lead in Water Testing Reminder and Important Deadlines

Audience: Principals, Facilities Managers, and Business Managers
Schools are required to test their water for lead every three years according the schedule in the rule governing testing and remediation of lead in the drinking water of schools and child care facilities. Some schools will need to complete their next round of testing during the 2023-2024 school year. Details on how to complete testing are forthcoming. The first round of lead testing ended on December 31, 2021, and schools need to be aware of the following deadlines. The State will pay for first-round follow up tests ordered by November 30, 2023. After that, schools will be responsible for the costs of first-round follow up testing. Reimbursement requests for remediations from the first round of testing must be submitted by December 31, 2023. More information about lead testing can be found on the Vermont Department of Health website
Contact: Roxanne Karimi,

Comprehensive Health Interdisciplinary Framework Released 

Audience: Superintendents, Curriculum Directors, Principals, and K-12 Educators
The Agency of Education has released a Comprehensive Health Interdisciplinary Framework that highlights simple ways the teaching of health education can be incorporated across the K-12 curriculum. The document provides examples of lessons where health education content and/or skills are integrated into other subject areas. The purpose of this document is to not supplant current health education practices, but to provide further tools that school districts can use to supplement, and further advance, current comprehensive health education programs (as required by 16 V.S.A § 131).
Contact: Ian Burfoot-Richford, 

The Vermont 250th

Audience: Superintendents, Principals, Curriculum Directors, CTE Administrators, K-12 Educators, Librarians, Afterschool Program Directors
The Vermont 250th Education and Outreach Committee is currently sharing information on the Agency of Education Social Studies website. Resources and tools are linked that can be used by educators to engage students in learning about the founding of the nation. The committee is focused on sharing the underrepresented voices of the American Revolution, and making the work inclusive of the diverse communities that have contributed to Vermont’s past and will continue to shape its future.
Contact: Martha Deiss,

Specialized Service Providers: Making Connections with VTmtss

Audience: Superintendents, Principals/School Heads, Special Education Directors, MTSS Coordinators
The Specialized Service Providers (SSPs): Making Connections with VTmtss tool is to be used by school systems when reviewing and improving their collaboration with Specialized Service Providers (SSPs) to utilize and embed their expertise. It is designed to increase staff awareness of these services and strives to expand access to these services for all students. As an addition to the series of Making Connections with VTmtss tools, it can also be used in conjunction with the VTmtss Systems Screener, VTmtss Framework, VTmtss Driver Diagram, and continuous improvement goal setting. This tool will be piloted until June 30, 2024. After using the tool, your feedback would be greatly appreciated.
Contact: Nancy Hellen,

Family Engagement Networking Series   

Audience: Family Engagement Personnel, Administrators    
Please join the Family Engagement Networking Series facilitated by the AOE Vermont Multi-tiered System of Supports (VTmtss) Team. The next Networking Session on November 8, 1-2 p.m. will focus on Reflective and Restorative Practices. With guest Caitlin Chisholm of the VTmtss Team, we’ll explore practices to build, maintain, and repair trusting relationships, to strengthen equitable school-family relationships. These are informal monthly virtual sessions for family engagement colleagues to connect and discuss problems of practice regarding family engagement. Sessions are held every second Wednesday from 1-2 p.m. We are aware of problems joining past sessions, we apologize and have made corrections.
Contact: Nancy Hellen,

Utilizing De-escalation Strategies to Maintain Least Restrictive Environments

Audience: Educators, Principals, Support Staff
The Utilizing De-escalation Strategies to Maintain Least Restrictive Environments workshop will highlight various strategies for de-escalating students. Participants will learn about Champlain Valley Supervisory District's ATLAS Program and how this program has created an opportunity for students to remain in their home school community, avoiding out-of-school placements. Participants will learn that every stage of the Escalation/Crisis Cycle is an opportunity. Utilizing the right tool(s) can prevent further escalations and protect the dignity of the student we are working with. The workshop will be held on Wednesday, November 8, 2023 from 8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. (with check-in from 8-8:30 a.m.)
Contact: Anne-Marie Dubie, or Laura Greenwood,

Analyzing Social/Emotional/Behavioral Data

Audience: Educators, Principals, Leadership Teams, Support Staff
This Analyzing Social/Emotional/Behavioral Data training will provide school leadership teams the opportunity to review existing school-wide and student social, emotional, and behavioral data so they can identify action steps for immediate and long-term change. For participants from schools implementing PBIS, the status of their school’s PBIS implementation will be reviewed. Teams will learn about and use the Team-Initiated Problem Solving (TIPS) protocol, an evidence-based meeting process for analyzing data for decision-making that can be used across domains. The training will be held on Thursday, November 9, 2023 from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. (with check-in from 8-8:30 a.m.)
Contact: Anne-Marie Dubie, or Laura Greenwood,

Functional Behavioral Assessment and Student Support Plan 

Audience: Educators, Principals, Leadership Teams, SEL/MH Staff
Functional Behavioral Assessment (FBA) is a process for identifying the events that reliably predict and maintain concerning behavior. A Student Support Plan (SSP) takes the observations made in an FBA and turns them into a plan of action for supporting a student's access to educational and social opportunities at school. This two-part training will focus on systems needed to develop the capacity to conduct FBA/SSPs and practical approaches to developing effective FBAs and SSPs. The training will be held on Tuesday, November 14, and Tuesday, December 12, 2023 from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. (with check-in from 8:30-9 a.m.)
Contact: Anne-Marie Dubie, or Laura Greenwood,

Vermont School Safety Center

Audience: Superintendents, Principals and School Crisis Planning Stakeholders
The Vermont School Safety Center would like to announce the following “Crisis Communication” training being provided by Mark Bosma, the Public Information Officer at Vermont Emergency Management. This two-hour training will be held virtually on November 14 and November 15 from 9 to 11 a.m. The training is designed to educate and inform schools and school districts on how to effectively communicate with your school community during a critical incident. Register on the Vermont School Safety Center’s website.
Contact: Robert Evans, Vermont School Safety Liaison Officer, or (802) 839-0448.

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Questions? Email Nichole Barnes at