SHAPE Vermont Advocacy and Legislation
Vermont ESSA Plan Released
The Vermont Agency of Education, in collaboration with roughly 2000 stakeholders statewide, has drafted a Vermont State Plan in response to the requirements of the Vermont Education Quality Standards (EQS) and the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). The Plan primarily describes the state’s proposed system for local-level accountability and applications for ESSA-related federal funding, with an emphasis on supporting school and Supervisory Union and District continuous improvement efforts. Read the 200+ pages here.
The Plan received approval from the US Department of Education on August 31, 2017
As Vermont works to implement an accountability system that better reflects the state’s education priorities, changes will need to be made at the state and local level. To meet these new requirements, some shifts in practice will be required of schools and SU/SDs. The most important changes requiring local-level action are in a checklist provided here.
Please note ACTION 3: Administer the new Physical Education (PE) assessment (grades to be delivered September 2017) in the 2017 – 2018 school year. Beginning: Field tested in all schools in Spring 2018, with implementation for accountability in Spring 2019.
SHAPE VT will be working with our state partners in the VT AOE and the Vermont Department of Health to provide resources including professional development, technological and assessment resources. We will post information here as it is received from the VT AOE.
Advocacy in our Schools
To Fair Haven Union High School Principal Brett Blanchard, requiring students to sit still in a classroom for hours is counterproductive. A vocal proponent of lifelong physical activity, the Vermont educator “walks the walk” — quite literally — by conducting meetings and phone conversations from the treadmill that replaces his office desk and chair. He contends that the traditional paradigm of learning has contributed to some of our society’s biggest health challenges: inactivity, obesity and over-medication. Read more here.
Read Brett Blanchard's "Educating for Lifelong Health" op-ed in the November 7th Vermont Digger here.
Vermont Agency of Education and Vermont Department of Health
The Vermont School Wellness Policy Guidelines have been updated as of Fall 2016. Please visit this link to review these new guidelines.
Wellness policies are an important tool for school districts in promoting student wellness, preventing and reducing childhood obesity, and providing assurance that school meal nutrition guidelines meet the minimum federal school meal standards. The final rule requires LEAs to begin developing a revised local school wellness policy during School Year 2016-2017 and compliance by June 30, 2017. Because of the compliance deadline, schools across Vermont will be actively working on revising their policies.
As Vermont develops its ESSA state accountability plan and report cards, daily physical education should be included as a core component. With daily PE, we can keep kids’ hearts healthy and their minds in gear to do their best. Please download and distribute the following to help get your message out to your school and community.
Every Student Succeeds Act Frequently Asked Questions
You're the Cure and The Pulse
These AHA websites give you the tools you need to play a crucial role in the fight against heart disease and stroke. You’ll be able to communicate with key legislators, connect with advocates near you, and stay up-to-date on the heart and stroke issues that matter most to you. Visit the Federal and State newsroom and advocacy site here.
The American Heart Association has launched an exciting campaign in Vermont to promote healthy kids’ meals and drinks in restaurants. Please join us and show your lawmakers that you support making the healthy choice the easy choice for families.
You can help by taking two minutes to complete an electronic postcard for legislators! AHA VT will print out the cards and deliver them to legislators in the statehouse during the legislative session, when they are considering this important bill.
Vermont Advocacy Tools
Be an advocate for physical activity, health and physical education in Vermont. Visit the State of Vermont Legislative page found here frequently to reach your representative or for updates on pending bills and other news of interest.
SHAPE America Advocacy Center
To further its mission of supporting healthy, creative, and active lifestyles for all Americans, SHAPE America and its associations are working to educate the U.S. Congress and Executive Branch on the following legislative priorities: Continued funding for the CDC's DASH program; PE and HE as core subjects , and PEP grant funding. Take action today!
Access state-specific resources here to help you advocate for health and physical education in your own school and community! Resources include: fact sheets, presentations, templates, and links to key Vermont stakeholders.
Do you have a news story to share? How about information about a job opening? Visit the SHAPE VT Facebook page and share your news immediately with our members.