CAES board adopts limited school choice

Gloria Dufield
© 2015 Telegraph Publishing, LLC

T he Chester-Andover Board of Directors on Monday, May 11, finalized some specific policy and processes that continue to reflect the district merger.  Of most significance on this short agenda for CAES students and parents were adoption of limited school choice program within the district for the elementary grades and the TRSU Policy F26: The Use of Restraints & Seclusion.

Chester-Andover Board of Directors meet last Monday. Photo by Gloria Dufield.

Chester-Andover Board of Directors meet last Monday. Photo by Gloria Dufield.

During the April board meeting, limited school choice for K-6 students within the district was discussed with Two Rivers Supervisory Union Associate Superintendent Linda Waite.  At the May meeting, TRSU Superintendent Bruce Williams provided an introductory letter that outlined the program and affirmed that “each Board will be able to evaluate the value of the agreement on an annual basis.”

Accompanying the letter, a four-page document on the program included details of implementing it with a limit of six students per school, duration of the program, discipline, special education, athletic or activity eligibility/participation and transportation.

Limited school choice, proposed by the districtwide Innovations in Learning Committee, looked to offer more options for students and parents as well as to provide a 50/50 split for sending/receiving schools for State of Vermont  Average Daily Membership funding. Currently, all ADM funding remains with the sending school.

CAES board director Jake Arace, who also sits on the Innovations Committee, stated that $50,000 to $60,000 could possibly be recouped for CAES with this new agreement. Williams stated that Cavendish and Mount Holly elementary schools had already approved the program with Ludlow Elementary reviewing it in early June. But, he added, there was no pressure for the CAES board to adopt the program.

After a brief discussion, board members adopted the program unanimously.

Current dates in the program documentation maybe changed to allow more time for applications to be submitted while the boards finalize accepting the program.

Board chair Marilyn Mahusky said the Restraints & Seclusion Policy was not originally adopted since it would have been redundant with a state policy. However, she now saw the benefit of the district policy with the addition of  the procedures and documentation.

Superintendent Williams said it that the school principals wanted written policy and procedures in place when restraint and seclusion was required.  The new district-wide form would be replacing six forms and would allow for consistency and availability of complete documentation when situations required restraint or seclusion. The policy was adopted by the board and Mahusky reminded everyone that it was “only used as a last resort.”

In other news:

  • First reading of modified Enrollment of Children of Non-Resident Teachers policy. Teacher Michelle Robidoux asked if this policy would take precedence over the new limited school choice program.  Williams said it would.
  • Family Picnic day will be held Friday, June 12 with 6th Grade graduation sest for Monday, June 15. Board chair Mahusky will speak at graduation this year and Jeff Hance has volunteered to speak at next year’s graduation.
  • Discussion of Vermont Bill H. 361 and its possible impacts on smaller schools was mentioned by Superintendent Williams. The bill looks to make amendments to education funding, spending and governance on a statewide level. Williams didn’t think the model for TSRU would need to change since many modifications were already conducted in anticipation of this state level bill but he said the “devil is in the details”.
  • CAES members of the Building Committee will be meeting with their counterparts from GMUHS to look at possible work that needs to be completed during the summer including roofing at the elementary school.

CAES School Board minutes, agendas, policies, and reports are available on the school website with available agendas also on The Chester Telegraph. The CAES board meets on the second Monday of each month at 5:30 p.m. at the school, 73 Main St. Chester-Andover school board meetings are also recorded by SAPA TV, where they can be viewed.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Filed Under: Education NewsFeatured

About the Author: Gloria Dufield is a Green Mountain Union High School and University of Vermont graduate. She has more than 15 years of experience working in higher education libraries. Her most recent writing includes marketing projects for a Vermont GIS company as well as articles for a weekly publication.

RSSComments (0)

Trackback URL

Comments are closed.