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Comment Archives: stories: News + Opinion: Education

Re: “Vermont Schools Prepare for More Kneeling Athletes

These social justice warriors should protest on their own time. Attendance at sporting events is dropping, keep turning people off with this staged outrage, but don't be surprised if some sports are eliminated.

Posted by Thomas Sperry on 12/05/2017 at 2:11 PM

Re: “Vermont Schools Prepare for More Kneeling Athletes

"And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O'er the land of the free...

It's the free part that is important. Freedom is what separates us from other not so nice countries and can't defend themselves from antagonists because they know they are fundamentally wrong. We are wrong when it comes to treating everyone fairly. Is every person that thinks this is wrong a racist. I fought so you could do what you want within the law. That is what all veterans fought for.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Bill Magnus on 12/04/2017 at 3:59 PM

Re: “Vermont Schools Prepare for More Kneeling Athletes

and who are you to say its wrong, Renee

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Pixelvt on 12/04/2017 at 2:32 PM

Re: “Vermont Schools Prepare for More Kneeling Athletes

To bring awareness to injustice, we have a right to peacefully protest, this is the USA, this is our way, this is the reason we are not Russia and this is the reason we are not Iran! This is that precious Liberty we are talking about. Cherish it! Keep protesting for the right for ALL citizens, for equality!

5 likes, 7 dislikes
Posted by Renee on 12/02/2017 at 6:15 AM

Re: “Vermont Schools Prepare for More Kneeling Athletes

While we may have a RIGHT to do something, that does not make it RIGHT.

11 likes, 6 dislikes
Posted by Leanne Sykes-King on 12/01/2017 at 10:29 AM

Re: “A Student Shortage at Saint Michael's College Leads to Existential Questions

meanwhile they have slashed all of their adjuncts...those same folks who have been teaching the majority of courses..most tenured people don't do much like as it is with most places in academia...I have a female friend mentioned in the article who has been teaching for very low wages for 20 years and gave so much to St. Mikes...loved by all of her students......and she is now gone and given her pink slip...any adjunct who joined the union was pretty much screwed...way to go St. Mikes's ! no buyout, no yes, the tenured staff will have to actually take on much more than they are willing or used to...such a good news article when the reality is a disaster and many have been hurt...this won't work in the end...such good catholic community wonder they are failing

Posted by Jeffery Cash Weigand on 11/30/2017 at 3:38 PM

Re: “How a Vermont High School Ended Up With Only Two Students

RE: "Maybe having school choice for middle and high school will actually bring families back," Schenkman said.

You think....

Westminster's 7th & 8th grades enjoy School Choice. They typically choose from a half dozen or so local independent and public schools. Interestingly, 7th & 8th grade enrollments in Westminster are consistently 10%+ higher than its K-6 public elementary and BFUHS 9-12 enrollments. Local real estate ads laud School Choice as a selling 'feature'.

A recent article about Burr & Burton Academy, an independent School Choice institution in Manchester, "...found that homebuyers are willing to pay an increase of up to 5.9 percent for a home in a school choice town like Manchester, and 83 percent of parents whose children attend BBA said that school choice was a major factor in deciding where to settle down and raise their kids."…

BBA enrollments are holding steady while local districts across the State see a 20%+ decline, student test scores at BBA are 15% higher than the State average, twice as many BBA graduates go on to college as the State public school average, and while the VT AOE contemplates an 8% increase in Vermont's education property tax, BBA's tuition is increasing 2.2%.

School Choice has been a successful education governance model in 90+ Vermont school districts for decades. Apparently, the more State education administrators resist School Choice, the fewer students attend the public school monopoly programs. Isn't it time to read the writing on these quiet school hallway walls?

4 likes, 6 dislikes
Posted by Jay Eshelman on 11/24/2017 at 8:16 AM

Re: “How a Vermont High School Ended Up With Only Two Students

Since the Brigham decisions, it feels that the AOE and the state proposes a solution, and that the solution creates a new problem that they then attempt to solve. There has got to be a way to do what communities have done for decades while still providing opportunities and cost savings.

Act 46 is sound when it comes to using economies of scale to solve long standing problems. Special education services, technology and administrative costs all become more efficient when centralized. But the state also keeps creating new initiatives. Each requires someone to oversee it, their staff, and each supervisory district is made to hire coordinators and consultants while sending staff for professional development. Plus, as the AOE centralizing everything it is adding staff to oversee programs that were left to local schools. There is a lot of administrative bloat at all levels in response to these initiatives.

If Vermont is serious about keeping costs down, it needs to look at how much initiatives have added to the cost. They also need to do an analysis on non-classroom teachers, staff and administration increases and the causes.

11 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Tom Triumph on 11/24/2017 at 6:15 AM

Re: “How a Vermont High School Ended Up With Only Two Students

Not only does Holcomb have no clue about Rochester. She lives in a town that is exempt from act 46. Actually excempt from any state law. Because of Norwichs interstate identity it literally takes an act of congress to change their structure. So she does have her own little island!

19 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Tim Pratt on 11/23/2017 at 5:55 PM

Re: “How a Vermont High School Ended Up With Only Two Students

I am saddened to see Rochester School close. Yes, I know that it is still open, but barely. Our family lives in PIttsfield. We had a choice of schools. We chose Rochester, and it was a good decision. We had just moved from a rather rich school district that did nothing for a child with learning disabilities. At Rochester, they recognized that our son learns differently than they teach, so they taught him how he learns. By graduation, he was in the Natl Honor Society, graduated with honors and is now studying anthropology with a focus on linguistics and culture.
We are willing to chuck away such a fine school. Why? Because it's too expensive. However, when compared with what ignorance and stupidity cost us, it was a bargain.

14 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by George Simpson on 11/23/2017 at 10:01 AM

Re: “How a Vermont High School Ended Up With Only Two Students

I work as a kindergarten teacher at the school. I have a couple of things to add to the article:

1. There was a petition that was ignored (upon suggestion of the supervisory union lawyer) back before Town Meeting. It would have opened up other discussion.

2. Not only did we lose students as a result of the pressure from Act 46 and the house of cards that collapsed, we lost our principal just two weeks ago. She was ill, but had to withstand a tremendous amount of stress in this situation. We all have:, the taxpayers, the students, the parents, the Study Committees, and the Board Members.

3, The music teacher's name is Holly Mugford, not Mumford.

13 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Amy C. Braun on 11/23/2017 at 8:54 AM

Re: “How a Vermont High School Ended Up With Only Two Students

Act 46 not only closed schools it closed communities. The gerrymandering by the AOE and VT legislature limiting various school structures ability to work together was extremely short sighted and frankly mean spirited. There are too many supervisory unions and little trust in local school boards. The independent schools will thrive under this law.

16 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Tim Murphy on 11/23/2017 at 1:06 AM

Re: “How a Vermont High School Ended Up With Only Two Students

Act 46 is closing schools and destroying small Vermont towns. I want to be known as verbally fighting Act 46 every step of the way.

Seems this battle over education in Vermont, how to fund it, make money off educating and controlling people has been going on for more than just a few generations. I know Act 68 closed the Two-Room Hancock Village School that had been in operation for 209 years when I was there. Been there/done that. And I do know that history has a tendency to repeat itself. The people in charge tweak it and perfect it for the next time around.

Look what I found reading VERMONT LEGISLATIVE REPORTS An Index to Reports found in the Journals of the Vermont House and Senate:

"Act relating to division of property and assets of school districts. 1872: SJ 418-419; Board of Education, investigation of, 1872: HJ 551-554; Board of Education. nominations by governor for, 1860: SJ 228; Board of Education, selection of books by, 1867: HJ 446-452; 1867: Sl 300-306; School
Fund, 1824:; School Fund, equitable distribution, 1913: HJ 907-913; "

Not impressed Vermont Legislature, not impressed with Act 46. You sold out and now you're selling us out.


14 likes, 6 dislikes
Posted by Amy C. Braun on 11/22/2017 at 9:54 PM

Re: “How a Vermont High School Ended Up With Only Two Students

This article correctly notes the hesitation of people to send their kids at least thirty minutes away with a mountain in every direction but it doesn't go far enough in explaining what it means. People reading this article should think about how their kids' and their own lives would be affected. How would they manage a kids' schedule who wanted to participate in a sport or a play or any extra-curricular activity? Think about the expense of schlepping them around when the school is 40 minutes away. Would they even bother, even if they could afford it? Without a doubt, the people in Rochester understand their situation is unsustainable. Ms. Holcombe's comment that we can't have everything saying. "I want my island in Hawaii, and I'm not going to get it." is insensitive, at best. I imagine if people from Rochester were making $150k like Holcombe is, the conversation would be different. She's from Norwich and can't possibly relate.

26 likes, 4 dislikes
Posted by lassy2 on 11/22/2017 at 8:01 PM

Re: “Bev Colston's Mission: to Serve UVM's Students of Color

Bev has been my mentor for over eight years. She and her staff were mentors to me during my time as a graduate student of color at UVM. I'm now directing my own multicultural student services center in Cleveland, Ohio and much of my style is directly influenced by Bev's style, grace, and love. She taught me what I know and do. Thank you Seven Days for this wonderful highlight on a treasured loved one and my dear mentor.

7 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Salomon Rodezno on 11/09/2017 at 11:31 PM

Re: “Bev Colston's Mission: to Serve UVM's Students of Color

Beautiful article! Bev Colston is such a phenomenal woman. Truly a beacon of love and light. She is the glue to many in our community!

9 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Briana Martin on 11/09/2017 at 10:30 PM

Re: “Bev Colston's Mission: to Serve UVM's Students of Color

What a waste of University funds . Somewhere along the line Groovy UVy became oh so politically correct UVM . As an alum , I am disgusted with this nonsense .

4 likes, 25 dislikes
Posted by Rich ard on 11/08/2017 at 7:03 PM

Re: “Overheard Call Spawns a Court Case — and a Campus Free Speech Test

A private conversation overheard by some students who didn't like the words. That this incident is even in court shows me that this college campus is at the tipping point of becoming a fascist state. Scary days in Vermont indeed, when a person cannot have an opinion that was not even intended for others' ears.

10 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by saysme on 11/03/2017 at 11:40 AM

Re: “Overheard Call Spawns a Court Case — and a Campus Free Speech Test

I have no idea what was said or in what context, but that seems to be the potential problem in "overhearing" one-side of someone's conversation. We don't have to like what someone says or how they say it, but we need to defend the rights afforded all of us under the Constitution.

25 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Tina R on 11/02/2017 at 4:46 PM

Re: “Overheard Call Spawns a Court Case — and a Campus Free Speech Test

Regardless of how this turns out, at least people searching for this kid, Wesley Richter, on the internet they will be able to find easily that he is an asshole.

"Wesley Richter"+VT+racist
"Wesley Richter" + VT + "asshole"

There that should help.

1 like, 47 dislikes
Posted by Adam Salem on 11/01/2017 at 2:05 PM

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