February 7, 2016

Local phys ed teacher surprised with $5,000 award

Courtesy photo by Oliver Parini The Excellence in Education Foundation's Miles Heller surprises Thomas Fleming School's physical education teacher and Williston native Kelly McClintock with a "no strings attached" grant for $5,000.

Courtesy photo by Oliver Parini
The Excellence in Education Foundation’s Miles Heller surprises Thomas Fleming School’s physical education teacher and Williston native Kelly McClintock with a “no strings attached” grant for $5,000.

By Colin Flanders

When Kelly McClintock entered the Thomas Fleming School gymnasium recently, she knew something was up. While the annual winter solstice sing-along may be popular among students, this year’s event had an unusual pair of guests—her parents.

Moments later, the Williston native was announced as the recipient of the 2016 Excellence in Education Foundation Award. The award, presented by fund trustee Miles Heller, came with a $5,000 grant to be used however McClintock wants. She had no idea it was coming.

“It’s a big honor,” she said. “I think it represents all the teachers in Essex Junction. We work really hard and it’s not always an easy job, so it’s really exciting to see that people do notice your hard work and passion for teaching.” [Read more…]

Act 46 ‘tweak’ passes House

By Tiffany Danitz Pache

For Vermont Digger

After weeks of wrangling and a bout of midnight madness, the House passed a bill that softens a cap on school spending. They voted 92-32 to approve a measure that gives districts more leeway this year and, as proposed by the Senate, removes the cost containment provision altogether in fiscal year 2018.

House Republicans wanted to keep the caps in place for 2018, while Democrats said they would press for a new piece of legislation to extend the threshold into next year. The Democratic majority feared that if they didn’t move ahead with the Senate version of the bill they wouldn’t pass legislation in time for towns to warn school budgets before Town Meeting Day. [Read more…]

Candidates prep for school boards

By Stephanie Choate

Observer staff

The Williston and Champlain Valley Union High school boards will see new faces this year. Several longtime members have chosen not to run for reelection, and new residents will be on the ballot.

A Williston School Board three-year term will prompt Town Meeting Day’s only contested race.

Mark Lamorey and Amanda Marvin are both running for the spot. Both residents served as “budget buddies” this budget season, providing input to the Board as it worked through its budget proposal.

Mark Lamorey [Read more…]

Allen Brook School art project to culminate in Feb. 10 twilight parade

By Stephanie Choate

Observer staff

The art classroom full of first and second graders at Allen Brook School was remarkably quiet on Tuesday afternoon, as students watched visiting artist Gowri Savoor demonstrate a technique for blending watercolors to a cotton candy-like softness.

Perhaps the school-wide project’s theme—“winter’s peace”—had lodged in their psyches.

All Allen Brook School students are making paper lanterns in art class over two weeks, led by artist in residence Savoor. [Read more…]