Agency of Education

The State Board of Education has less than two weeks to make its final decisions on which schools it will force to merge under Act 46, Vermont's school district consolidation law.

An empty classroom with a desk looking at a chalkboard. A pencil on the desk.
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There were two Act 46 merger proposals on Tuesday’s ballots, and voters overwhelmingly rejected both of them.

A group of people around tables at a State Board of Education meeting.
Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

The State Board of Education is finishing up its work on the Act 46 statewide plan, and at a meeting in North Clarendon on Monday, the board debated some of the most complicated merger proposals.

Vermont Education Secretary Dan French, left, and State Board of Education chairwoman Krista Huling consult a merger map during a State Board meeting Wednesday.
Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

On Wednesday, the State Board of Education began its process for deciding which school districts will be forced to merge under Act 46, Vermont’s school district consolidation law.

A meeting with Vermont Agency of Education staff facing State Board of Education members in Bethel.
Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

After an all-day meeting Tuesday in Bethel, the State Board of Education has adopted a set of guidelines to help steer its decisions about which school districts will be forced to merge under Act 46.

Andy Paciulli, who was Academy School principal when this photo was taken in February, points to one of the Brattleboro school's fixtures that was replaced after state tests discovered lead was leaching into the water.
Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR File

The results of a new report found lead contamination in each of the 16 Vermont schools tested.

The state is calling for more testing, however the report says there are not enough resources to test the water in every school building in Vermont. 

A group of people gather around a table in a dark room.
Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

After a series of meetings to hear testimony from Vermonters, the final decisions about forcing mergers on school districts throughout the state now lie with the State Board of Education.

A row of classroom desks
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The Agency of Education has released a draft version of the articles of agreement that will be used by school districts that are forced to merge under Act 46.

Ninety school districts - about a quarter of Vermont’s communities - have proposed meeting Act 46’s goals through collaboration rather than formal merger.

A row of classroom desks
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The State Board of Education has laid out its ground rules for a series of meetings that will give school districts a chance to push back against the education secretary’s proposed Act 46 state plan.

Chaunce Benedict, from Swanton, attended the State Board of Education meeting in Barre. Benedict is a former superintendent and says small schools should not lose their annual grant payments.
Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

The State Board of Education is bumping up against a June 30 deadline for addressing proposed changes to Vermont’s small school grant program.

Desks in a line in an empty classroom. Up close of one with books in it.
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The Vermont State Board of Education has released a schedule for its three regional meetings to collect local testimony on the statewide Act 46 merger plan that was recently released by the Agency of Education.

Exterior of Wolcott Elementary School on an overcast day.
Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR

A nearly 200-page report was released by the Vermont Agency of Education on Friday, and school districts around Vermont are going through the state's school consolidation recommendations.

Desks in a line in an empty classroom. Up close of one with books in it.
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The State Board of Education has given Gov. Phil Scott three candidates to consider for the next secretary of education.

An empty classroom of desks, one with a pencil and composition book sitting on it.
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A spokeswoman for Gov. Phil Scott says the governor will likely not name an interim education secretary before he receives a list of secretary candidates from the State Board of Education.

Desks in a line in an empty classroom. Up close of one with books in it.
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Gov. Phil Scott said in a letter to the State Board of Education that experience with the public school system should "not necessarily" be a requirement for Vermont’s next secretary of education.

Frank Amato / courtesy, Eagle Times

You can’t just walk into Springfield High School: There's a camera trained on the front door — which is locked — all part of the school's security plan. And that's just the beginning.

Gov. Phil Scott, in center, listens to Vermont educators talk about education spending at a summit at Norwich University on Monday.
Howard Weisss-Tisman / VPR

Last month Gov. Phil Scott put out a call for a statewide education summit, and more than 300 people took part in the meeting which was held at Norwich University on Monday.

Desks in a line in an empty classroom. Up close of one with books in it.
GlobalStock / iStock

State officials say Vermont's prekindergarten system needs an administrative overhaul.

Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR

A new Joint Fiscal Office study found that the state will spend almost $31 million for school districts that merged under Act 46.

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