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Cultural Series Presentation
May 30, 2013

The most recent presentation of the Cultural Diversity Series was held on May 23rd at Hunt Middle School. The presentation, Exploring the Successes and Challenges of the Bosnian and Congolese Communities, featured students speaking about their experiences in the Burlington Schools as well as a BSD parent speaking about the realities of the life in the Congo. The presentation can be viewed online at:Click Here

Burlington College Ground-Breaking Ceremony
May ?? 2012

L to R: Jeanné Collins, Ali Amir (Elder from the Somali Bantu of Vermont Community Association) and Mayor Weinberger at Wednesday's ground-breaking ceremony of free garden space at 345 North Avenue. This garden will be used by 30+ families from the Somali and Burundi communities and is part of the College's launch of the Sustainability and Urban Gardening Project.
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Mayor Kiss: No Dispute Between the School District and City About Shift of Retirement/FICA Costs and its Effect on Tax Rate
March 1, 2012

PRESS RELEASE: Burlington Mayor Bob Kiss issued a statement today regarding the article in the Feb 29 Burlington Free Press about the school budget:
"It is inaccurate and misleading to say there is a dispute between the City and the School District regarding the impact of the shift of certain retirement and FICA costs from the City to the school budget," said Mayor Kiss. "We have said all along that the District's assumption of responsibility for these costs will mean a corresponding reduction of costs, equating to 4 cents in property tax, on the City side of the budget."
"Regardless of whether other factors cause an increase in the total municipal tax rate, as a result of this shift, the City tax rate will be 4 cents less than it otherwise would have been," continued Mayor Kiss.
"The shift in costs will also benefit those Burlington taxpayers whose school taxes are lessened as a result of income sensitivity, because the costs will now be part of the school budget. In that respect it's a "win-win" for Burlington taxpayers." Additional information about the shift in costs and impact on the municipal tax rate can be found in a memo on the January 17, 2012 City Council agenda:
View the Agenda

Updated Tax Information
February 27, 2012

The Vermont Department of Education has released information on estimated tax rates for residential homeowners for Burlington, based on base education tax rates as proposed and passed by the House in H. 754. The bill awaits deliberation by the Senate.
The rates passed by the House include a Homestead rate of $0.88. Original budget estimates by the district used a Homestead rate of $0.89.
Based on the House bill, the total residential education rate will go from $1.3019 to $1.4208. This is an increase of 9.13% for Burlington residential taxpayers.
The Interim CAO for the City of Burlington has estimated that the shifting of retirement costs to the schools will save city taxpayers 4 cents on the municipal tax rate. This would reduce the tax impact of the school budget to a net of under 8 cents, or $80 per year on a home valued at $100,000.
School tax is income sensitive, so actual amounts will depend on income and housesite value. A homestead tax table showing the estimated amounts Burlington residential homeowners will pay on their housesite is available at:
Click Here

Town Meeting on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in the Burlington School District scheduled for Febuary 23, 2012

The Burlington School Board is announcing a TOWN MEETING to shape the district's strategic plan on diversity, equity, and inclusion.The Board of School Commissioners of the Burlington School District will be hosting a town hall-style gathering on Thursday, February 23, 2012 at 4:30 PM at Contois Auditorium in Burlington City Hall. The event will be an opportunity for the Burlington community to join with Burlington School District board members, teachers, staff, and administrators to reflect on the recent Task Force Report on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and offer suggestions to the School Board in the development of a district-wide strategic plan on diversity and equity.
Read the Task Force Report
Questions may be directed to Dr. Dan Balon, Director of Diversity & Equity, at 802-864-8494 or diversity@bsdvt.org or Paul Hochanadel, School Board Member and Chair of Diversity & Equity Committee at phochanadel@bsdvt.org.

EMS Navigator Team Open House
Wednesday, February 22nd from 5PM-7PM
February 20, 2012

Do you have questions about technology rich learning? Do you want to know what a 21st Century classroom should look like? Come and see for yourself!! You are invited!

Navigator Team has been piloting a technology rich learning environment for three years, with the assistance of Tarrant Institute and UVM. Come see what it is all about! This open house lets you get in and see for yourself. This is a student centered and self guided opportunity for Burlington residents to experience what we want all of our students to experience. Light refreshments available. We hope to see you there! 3rd floor of EMS, 5 - 7 PM this Wednesday!

Voting Information
February 14, 2012

For information on voter registration, where to vote, absentee ballots, etc.
Click Here

Come See Your Schools In Session!
January 31, 2012

All Burlington Residents are invited to visit the schools and see learning as it happens. During the following dates and times, schools invite you in to tour and see classrooms and buildings. We are proud of the learning that occurs in the Burlington schools! Come see what you have been supporting. Stay and have lunch in our Farm to School cafeterias. Peek in a classroom or two and see what students are doing.

Tour schedule for Winter 2012

  • Jan. 31 1:30 - 2:30pm Champlain Elementary
  • Feb. 02 5:30 - 6:30pm Flynn Elementary
  • Feb. 06 1:00 - 2:00pm Edmund's Elementary
  • Feb. 06 2:00 - 3:00pm Edmund's Middle
  • Feb. 06 7:00 - 8:30pm BHS
  • Feb. 07 8:30 - 9:30am BHS
  • Feb. 07 8:00 - 10:30am Hunt Middle
  • Feb. 07 5:00 - 6:00pm BHS
  • Feb. 10 8:30 - 9:30am Flynn Elementary
  • Feb. 13 8:30 - 9:30am Champlain Elementary
  • Feb. 14 9:00 - 10:00am Integrated Arts Academy at HO Wheeler
  • Feb. 14 1:00 - 2:00pm EEE/Ira Allen Building - 150 Colchester Ave.
  • Feb. 14 5:30 - 6:30pm Sustainability Academy at Barnes Open House
  • Feb. 16 9:00 - 10:00am Sustainability Academy at Barnes
  • Feb. 16 1:00 - 2:00pm EEE/Ira Allen Building - 150 Colchester Ave.
  • Feb. 16 5:30 - 6:30pm Integrated Arts Academy at HO Wheeler Open House
  • Feb. 24 9:00 - 10:00am Smith Elementary
  • Feb. 24 3:00 - 4:00pm Smith Elementary
  • Nellie Mae Grant Awarded
    January 26, 2012

    The Burlington and Winooski school districts have won a three-year grant of about $3.5 million designed to help customize the high school experience and allow more young people to succeed in college or the workplace.

    The Nellie Mae Education Foundation confirmed Wednesday that the two Chittenden County school districts, which applied jointly for the grant, are winners and would receive an amount close to the $3.5 million they sought in their application, although the precise number won't be finalized for a week or more.
    To read the full article, Click Here
    To visit our Nellie Mae Grant page, Click Here

    Prospective Parent Visits and Information Sessions
    Visit our magnet schools and register for the 2012-13 school year.
    January 20, 2012

    Come visit on February 13, 14, or 16th. See the February Schedule for more information!
    February Schedule

    Mayoral Forum to be Held at Sustainability Academy!
    January 18, 2012

    On Monday, January 23, 2012, The Sustainability Academy at Lawrence Barnes School will proudly host a Mayoral Forum featuring the three candidates for Mayor of the City of Burlington. This Forum, organized and put on by the school's fourth and fifth graders, will host Miro Weinberger, Wanda Hines, and Kurt Wright, who will answer questions put together by students that come directly from their units of study this year. The Forum will begin at 10 a.m. and last for approximately an hour.

    The public is welcome! For more details, contact Anne Tewksbury-Frye at 864-8480.

    Culturally Competent Daily Practice through Intentional Acts of Resisting: Ten Things I Can Do to Be a Better Multicultural Educator
    January 16, 2012

    The Burlington School District Equity Council and Diversity & Equity Office welcome Paul Gorski, long-time board member of the National Association for Multicultural Education, founder of EdChange and Multicultural Pavilion, and nationally recognized consultant on equity and social justice in education. On January 16, 2012, Dr. Gorski will be speaking with district teachers, staff and the larger Burlington community as part of an in-service session at the Burlington High School Auditorium at 52 Institute Road, Burlington, VT 05408. The event is free and open to the public. Doors open at 8:00 am. Parking is free but limited, given the expected audience.
    Read More

    Unique Opportunity for Community Service
    January 10, 2012

    A School Commission position is up for election in every ward March 6. The position is responsible for a $70 million budget, over 900 employees, and serving the educational needs of 3800 students. The term is two years with attendance at several meetings each month. There is no compensation, but you will receive a tremendous satisfaction serving one of Burlington's greatest assets, her children.
    There will be an orientation for school board candidates Wednesday, January 18th at the Ira Allen School District office. Please RSVP at 864-8474. In order to run for school board election you will need to have a petition signed by at least 30 registered voters in your ward and turn it in to the city hall clerk's office by 5 PM January 30, 2012. The petition can be downloaded from the City of Burlington's clerk/treasurer's office website. See the City website for more information -
    Click Here

    Interim Co-Principal Appointed for IAA
    December 16, 2011

    Due to Principal Trevor Christopher's recent injury and his doctor's insistence that he pursue more aggressive medical attention, as well as his desire that "children come first", we have mutually agreed upon the assignment of a co-principal to help the school and the community to continue a smooth forward movement through the remainder of the current school year.
    Read our Press Release.
    Read More in the Burlington Free Press.

    High School Transformation Initiative Update
    December 15, 2011

    The grant for this work was submitted to the Nellie Mae Foundation on October 31! Whether or not we receive the grant, there is a commitment from educators, parents and community members to move forward with efforts to transform Burlington and Winooski High Schools. This work will affect many different community members (including teachers, parents, students, community partners, and people from diverse backgrounds). With this in mind, we are making the transition to a more diverse steering committee that is representative of the community.
    Read More

    Preliminary FY2013 Presented to the School Board
    Dates for Public Comment Released
    December 13, 2011

    The Burlington School District's Board of Commissioners was presented with the preliminary budget for FY 2013 by the Board's Finance Committee. This presentation begins the public portion of the budget review process that will lead to the budget that is presented to the Burlington voters on March 6, 2012.
    Click here for full press release.

    Fill the Bowl - A Benefit Dinner to Raise Awareness about Hunger
    December 15th, 2011

    Fill the bowl to help your community - A benefit dinner to raise awareness about hunger sponsored by the 3rd Grade at The Integrated Arts Academy - this Thursday, December 15th from 6:00-7:30 p.m. at the Integrated Arts Academy, 6 Archibald St., Burlington.

    Select from over 200 original handcrafted bowls made by 3rd graders and faculty at IAA, sample delicious soups and breads from local restaurants and bakeries. Proceeds from your donation ($5 minimum per bowl) will benefit locally,The Intervale Center, as well as globally, the Heifer Foundation. The bowls are to be taken home as a reminder that someone's bowl is always empty. There will also be a silent auction of artist made ceramic bowls that you may bid on.
    For details, click here.

    School Board Update: Diversity & Equity
    Paul Hochanadel, School Commissioner
    December 7, 2011

    I am pleased to announce that on Tuesday, November 29th we held the inaugural meeting of the new Diversity and Equity Committee of the Burlington School Board.

    On October 11, 2011 the Board created the new Diversity and Equity Committee, charged with oversight of diversity and equity issues, collecting data relating to diversity and equity, and monitoring implementation of our initiatives to achieve inclusion, equity, and diversity.

    In the coming months this committee will work with the administration to delve into the recommendations of the Task Force Report with the goal of creating a strategic plan to be adopted by the full School Board. We will work to identify what steps are already in place, such as the District's affirmative recruitment and hiring process, as well as what work needs to be done now and in the future. One of our first topics of discussion will be the goal of creating an "equity report card," which is a set of data points to be tracked annually that tells the Board and Administration what is working well and what needs to be addressed in creating an inclusive school community focused on student success. As the chair, I am very interested in creating opportunities for communication and collaboration with students, parents, teachers, and community members. I welcome anyone who is interested to contact me at phochanadel@bsdvt.org.

    The Sustainability Academy 5th Annual Pancake Breakfast and Silent Auction
    November 30, 2011

    It's that time of year again when the Sustainability Academy PTO hosts its biggest fundraiser and the best silent auction this side of Lake Champlain! Made possible by community members and artists, the Pancake Breakfast and Silent Auction will be this Saturday, December 3rd from 8:30-11:30 in the cafeteria of the Sustainability Academy. The menu will feature local Vermont foods including: scrumptious homemade pancakes, Vermont maple syrup, Cabot butter, Vermont apple cider, fresh brewed coffee and much more. Family entertainment will be provided.
    For details, click here.

    Principal Search Announced by Superintendent Collins
    November 28, 2011

    I am pleased to announce the start of the Edmunds Elementary Principal Search. I want to thank Dr. Shelley Mathias for stepping in as interim this year and I do invite her to apply, if she is interested. The search will commence with faculty and parent meetings on Dec. 5, the identification of a Principal Search Advisory Committee, and a posting being placed on Schoolspring and some national networks by mid December. I plan to close the posting by mid-Jan, with interviews held in late January/early February. It is hoped a decision will be made around the winter break. For more details, I will ask Edmunds Elementary to post info on their website for people to track.

    I am also pleased to announce that Brian Williams has agreed to remain as Interim Principal at Sustainability Academy at Lawrence Barnes School for a second year. This school has been going through some changes in the past year and anticipate finalizing this work later this winter, allowing us to advertise next year for a permanent principal with solid information to allow for a good match.

    C.P. Smith Harvest Dinner, November 17th, 5 p.m.
    Posted Nov. 15, 2011

    An invitation to Smith students and their families to attend a (free of charge) Community Dinner this Thursday! Please email shart@ppeclaw.com to RSVP.

    Vermont School Nurses on the Front Lines of Child Health Care
    November 9, 2011

    Some days, Christine Armstrong wishes she could turn back the clock to the 1950s, when she was a student. A school nurse at Burlington's C.P. Smith Elementary for the last 20 years, she says her students would be much healthier if they were growing up in a world without super-sized sodas, prepackaged lunch meats, TVs in every bedroom and weekends spent playing video games.
    Read More

    BSD Students and Schools in the News!
    December 1, 2011

    National Novel Writing Month at BHS
    Read More

    Claude Mumbere, Boys' Soccer Player of the Year
    Read More

    The New BHS Pep Band
    Read More

    The Sustainability Academy's 3rd Year
    Read More

    Tardiness Policy in Works
    November 21, 2011

    The Burlington Schools is doing a pilot test of procedures to address tardiness. This is in conjunction with a proposed policy under review by the School Board.
    The pilot test will begin on Monday November 28 and conclude on December 22nd. Parents will receive an Alert Now message if their student has been tardy more than five times during this school year, and a meeting will be recommended if there have been 15 or more instances of tardiness during this school year. Attendance at school is important for student success. Under this policy, we will be tracking tardiness as well as absences. Excessive tardiness causes students to miss important instructional time, and we strive to partner with parents to ensure students are in school on time.
    Click here to read the proposed policy.

    Recent Staff Accomplishments
    November 7, 2011

    Rich Tulikangas, Executive Director of Linking Learning to Life, Inc., is the 2011 Administrator of the Year, selected by the Vermont Association of Educational Office Professionals. Tulikangas received his award at the 73rd annual fall conference at the Stoweflake Resort & Conference Center in Stowe on October 29th.

    Frank Whitcomb was named Music Educator of the Year by the Vermont Music Educators Association. Frank teaches Chorus, Piano, and AP Music Harmony/Theory. He serves as the Music Advisor for the BHS Musical and leads the BHS Madigral Singers. He is lead teacher for Music/Art this year at BHS.

    Congratulations, Rich and Frank!

    Parent Information Sessions: Puberty, Sexual Development & Safety
    Tuesday November 8th and Tuesday November 15th
    Integrated Arts Academy at H.O. Wheeler
    6 Archibald Street
    Posted Nov. 3, 2011

    November 8th Two Sessions:
    6-6:45pm In English, with Interpreters for Somali/Somali Bantu & Nepali
    7-7:45pm In English, with Interpreters for Vietnamese and Kirundi

    November 15th Two Sessions:
    6-6:45pm In English, with Interpreters for Swahili and Burmese
    7-7:45pm In English, with Interpreters for Russian, Arabic, French, Bosnian

    Read More

    Update on Nellie Mae Grant Proposal
    November 3, 2011

    The WSD-BSD Partnership for Change proposal was submitted to the Nellie Mae Education Foundation on October 31, 2011. The proposal describes the community's hopes and plans for high school transformation, focusing on personalized learning, youth engagement, family/school/community partnerships, community-based learning opportunities and effective teaming at the high school level.
    Read More

    4th Annual Hunt Community Dinner
    October 25, 2011

    We hope that all families will join us (6pm-7pm) for this free community building meal. The PTO is organizing volunteers to best support this event and provide the support necessary for all families to participate. Please contact Barb Prine if you are able to help. We need many parent volunteers to help make this event work and there are many options to be involved. Parent volunteers are organized into shifts are from 5:30-6:30, 6:30-7:30, and 7:15 until all cleaned up. All volunteers will have the opportunity to participate and eat with their families. This is a very special dinner celebrating the fall harvest and our community. Thank you for joining us.
    Barb Prine
    864-5587
    paulandbarb@burlingtontelecom.net

    Board accepts Task Force Report on Recommended Strategic Plan on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
    October 12, 2011

    Last night, the School Board accepted the Task Force Report on the Recommended Strategic Plan on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion for the Burlington School District. This report, generated by a Board appointed committee of 20 community members, faculty and staff, is the culminating work of 10 months and many hours of research and discussion. The executive summary and the full report can be found here.
      Read More

    Task Force Report to Board
    October 10, 2011

    The Task Force on Diversity and Equity has completed their report, and will be presenting it to the Burlington Board of School Commissioners at their regular October meeting, Tuesday October 11, 7:00 PM at the BHS Cafeteria. The report includes recommendations on the multi-year strategic plan to further diversity, equity, and inclusion in the Burlington School District.
    To read the report, Click Here!

    Community Forum in Winooski October 5th
    October 10, 2011

    Our Schools Are Changing! Burlington and Winooski High School are re-designing learning to prepare all students for their future. Read the Burlington Free Press story on the meeting.
    Click Here!

    School Health Fair Sept. 8
    August 23, 2011

    On Thursday, September 8, 4:30 - 6:30, BHS will host the first annual Health Services Fair in the cafeteria. Representatives from our Tooth Tutor program, the School Based Health Centers, School Nursing Services, the Vermont Dept of Health, Howard Center, Medicaid, the Community Health Center of Burlington and others will be there. Anyone who has a student in any of our schools is invited to come and learn about various health-related services that we offer through our schools. Registration forms will be available for these services, and help will be available in completing those forms Snacks are provided!

    Update on Nellie Mae Grant Proposal
    August 18, 2011

    Winooski and Burlington have partnered together and applied for the Nellie Mae Foundation's, District Level Systems Change Grant. The initial WSD-BSD Grant Application was one of 70 applications from New England School Districts and our application was chosen as one of 12 for further consideration. After additional grant writing and site visits, we again were chosen as one of 7 applicants to participate in the Planning Year.
    Read More

    BSD Farm to School Recognized by USDA
    July 14, 2011

    A report released Tuesday by the U.S. Department of Agriculture offers useful "how-to" lessons for schools interested in joining the burgeoning Farm to School movement.
    Read More

    BHS Grad Named Presidential Scholar
    July 12, 2011

    Colin Gliech, Class of 2011, was recently named as a Presidential Scholar, the first one at BHS since 1979. Colin was among just 141 selected of the 3,000,000 graduating seniors this past year and was honored in Washington D.C. from June 18-21. Colin attended many different events with the other Scholars, including an incredible concert by some of the students at the Kennedy Center. David Rome (BHS Math Department) also traveled to D.C., having been selected by Colin as a recognized teacher. Colin will be attending Stevens Institute of Technology on a merit-based scholarship this fall.