Posted in Accountability, Colchester High School, Community, Currently Colchester, Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment, District Office, Employee Spotlight, General, Other Important Information, Personnel

Announcing the New CHS Principal

Dear Colchester Community,

On behalf of the Colchester School District we would like to thank the members of our community who participated in the collaborative process to find the next principal of Colchester High School. A selection committee consisting of students, parents, support staff, teachers, administrators, a school board member and other community members screened and interviewed candidates before recommending a finalist to the school board. I would like to extend special thanks to the selection committee, school board, and all individuals who attended the employee and community forums last evening.

CHS is a high-functioning school that requires a candidate who will continue the trajectory of the school.  We believe that an effective administrator pushes professional practice and promotes effective classroom and system-wide practices, while always doing what is best for students.

I am extremely pleased to announce that Heather Baron has been selected as the next Colchester High School Principal!  Heather was selected as a result of her ability to:

  • Understand what all learners need in order to be successful
  • Foster our culture of collaboration and curiosity
  • Develop and implement a vision for teaching and learning
  • Build strong relationships with students, staff, families and the community
  • Build capacity for teacher leadership
  • Seek out and listen to multiple perspectives
  • Make informed decisions confidently

Heather currently serves CHS as a science teacher, professional development coordinator and instructional coach.  During her 17 years in education she has demonstrated excellence both inside and outside of the classroom.  We are certain that she possesses the qualities and the capacity to lead Colchester High School to even greater heights.

Best wishes to Heather and Colchester High School for continued success!  Many thanks to all of the community members who participated in the comprehensive principal search process.

Sincerely,

Amy Minor

Posted in Accountability, Community, Currently Colchester, District Office, General, Other Important Information, Town of Colchester

May 2014 Currently Colchester Published Today

The May 2014 edition of the Currently Colchester publication is scheduled to arrive in Colchester households today; many Colchester residents can look for it as part of the Colchester Sun, while those who do not receive the Colchester Sun should receive Currently Colchester as a stand-alone publication.

To view the May 2014 issue of Currently Colchester in electronic format, please click here.


Remember, we can better tailor our communications with our community when we better understand what our community needs. We encourage dialogue that allows us to be proactive and that enhances our collaboration. Please send us your comments and suggestions to csdwebmaster@csdvt.org.

When we’re all informed, we make a stronger community! Please encourage your friends and family to subscribe to the Spotlight.

Posted in Accountability, Budgets, Colchester High School, Colchester Middle School, Community, Currently Colchester, Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment, District Office, General, Malletts Bay School, Other Important Information, Porters Point School, Programs, Union Memorial School, Vision Summit/Vision and Strategic Plan

Friendly Reminder: CSD Proposed Budget Reductions

(This information originally appeared in the April 17 edition of Currently Colchester, which was delivered to all homes in Colchester.)

Following the defeat of the budget on March 4, the Colchester School Board directed a targeted budget reduction of $475,331, which would result in a proposed budget of $35,532,781—an increase of $1,034,935, or 3 percent.

The three-step process for this reduction included reviewing the items that were added to the budget for next year to determine need and priority, completing another review of expenditures to determine areas where possible reductions might be made and the impact of those reductions on programs and services, and collaborating with principals to determine other areas for reductions and the impact of those reductions.

The result of this work includes the following reduction areas and amounts:

    1. Teacher contract salaries (hiring salary limits for at least seven openings): $84,441
    2. Special education support staff (elimination of special education position): $21,000
    3. Maintenance (use of capital reserve fund): $50,000
    4. Technology devices at CHS and CMS (eliminate devices planned for grades 7–9): $150,000
    5. Math lab support staff (no math remediation at CHS): $16,990
    6. Eliminate support staff at CMS (reduce office/library personnel): $23,092
    7. Technology integration specialist (eliminate K–5 technology instruction support): $77,814
    8. Currently Colchester publication (eliminate monthly publication): $14,000
    9. Other (related amounts to above): $5,407

Total Amount of Reductions $442,744

The summary of the superintendent’s proposed budget going before voters on May 6 is as follows:

Budget amount: $35,565,368
Increase amount: $1,067,522
Percentage amount: 3.09 percent
Tax increase amount: 3.69 percent
(This tax increase amount is based upon a Homestead Tax Rate of $0.98 per $100 of equalized value.)

Although increasing classroom technology integration is paramount not only to the district’s vision and strategic plan—written collaboratively with the community—but also in meeting requirements established by the Common Core State Standards—the budget reductions necessitate the elimination of this line item.

What else is particularly important to note?

The Vermont State Legislature is responsible for determining the Homestead Tax Rate, which greatly influences tax increases. This year, the legislature originally chose a rate of $1.01—which was 7 cents higher than last year’s—and it is upon the $1.01 rate that the original FY 2015 budget proposal was based. Recently, however, the Vermont House voted in favor of H.889 (which sets the property tax rates and base education amount for FY 2015). The bill, which is introduced by the committee annually, this year also includes a variety of changes to education financing laws and states the General Assembly’s intent to transition to an education financing system that relies less on property taxes and more on an education income tax. H.889 recently set the base homestead rate at $0.98 per $100 of equalized property value, up four cents from fiscal year 2014.

We encourage citizens to review our comprehensive budget-related information, available on the district’s website. We also encourage community members to call our administrative offices at (802) 264-5999 to ask questions.

The above chart offers a summary of Colchester School District’s FY 2015 expenditures by function. For more detailed information, please visit www.csdvt.org/budget.
The above chart offers a summary of Colchester School District’s FY 2015 expenditures by function. For more detailed information, please visit http://www.csdvt.org/budget.

What would the FY ’15 school budget mean for my taxes?

The following table provides information about tax increases based upon property value. For example, the taxes for the owner of a property valued at $300,000 whose total household annual income is greater than $90,000 would increase $151.

cc_apr_PropertyValue

The following income-sensitivity table illustrates the tax increase for property owners whose total annual household income is $90,000 or less. For example, the taxes for a property owner whose total annual household income is $65,000 would increase $26.89.

Approximately 60 percent of Colchester taxpayers will benefit from this income-sensitivity mechanism.
Approximately 60 percent of Colchester taxpayers will benefit from this income-sensitivity mechanism.

Questions? We’re here to help. Please call our administrative offices at (802) 264-5999 if you would like more information.

Please vote on Tuesday, May 6.

When we’re all informed, we make a stronger community! Please encourage your friends and family to subscribe to the Spotlight.

Posted in Accountability, Budgets, Community, Currently Colchester, District Office, General, Other Important Information, Town of Colchester

April 2014 Currently Colchester Published Today

The April 2014 edition of the Currently Colchester publication is scheduled to arrive in Colchester households today; many Colchester residents can look for it as part of the Colchester Sun, while those who do not receive the Colchester Sun should receive Currently Colchester as a stand-alone publication.

To view the April 2014 issue of Currently Colchester in electronic format, please click here.


As a friendly reminder, Currently Colchester is designed to offer news and information relating to your school district and your town government in a format that is accessible to all residents, including those without convenient access to the Internet. We continue to strongly encourage our community members to access information about CSD and the Town of Colchester through our regularly updated electronic communications methods; we are working hard to provide a wide variety of avenues through which community members can receive information, including:

The Colchester School Board encourages community participation at their meetings; in fact, the board’s agenda solicits comments from the community at every meeting. (Join them at Colchester High School on the first and third Tuesday of each month beginning at 7:00 p.m. (You can also watch them on Lake Champlain Access Television.)

Can’t make the school board meetings? Click here to submit a question (or e-mail SchoolBoardQuestions@csdvt.org) and enter your contact information and question. During the meeting on the third Tuesday of every month, the school board will review the top questions and themes submitted.

We also host and encourage participation in numerous community events in all of your schools throughout the year to foster the collaborative spirit that is so essential to academic excellence.

The Colchester Selectboard meets at 6:30 p.m. on the second and fourth Tuesday of each month at the Colchester Meeting House on Main Street, and LCATV also airs its meetings.

Remember, we can better tailor our communications with our community when we better understand what our community needs. We hope to encourage dialogue that allows us to be proactive and that enhances our collaboration. Please send us your comments and suggestions to csdwebmaster@csdvt.org.

When we’re all informed, we make a stronger community! Please encourage your friends and family to subscribe to the Spotlight.

Posted in Accountability, Community, Currently Colchester, District Office, General, Other Important Information, Town of Colchester

March 2014 Currently Colchester Published Today

The March 2014 edition of the Currently Colchester publication is scheduled to arrive in Colchester households today; many Colchester residents can look for it as part of the Colchester Sun, while those who do not receive the Colchester Sun should receive Currently Colchester as a stand-alone publication.

To view the March 2014 issue of Currently Colchester in electronic format, please click here.


As a friendly reminder, Currently Colchester is designed to offer news and information relating to your school district and your town government in a format that is accessible to all residents, including those without convenient access to the Internet. We continue to strongly encourage our community members to access information about CSD and the Town of Colchester through our regularly updated electronic communications methods; we are working hard to provide a wide variety of avenues through which community members can receive information, including:

The Colchester School Board encourages community participation at their meetings; in fact, the board’s agenda solicits comments from the community at every meeting. (Join them at Colchester High School on the first and third Tuesday of each month beginning at 7:00 p.m. (You can also watch them on Lake Champlain Access Television.)

Can’t make the school board meetings? Click here to submit a question (or e-mail SchoolBoardQuestions@csdvt.org) and enter your contact information and question. During the meeting on the third Tuesday of every month, the school board will review the top questions and themes submitted.

We also host and encourage participation in numerous community events in all of your schools throughout the year to foster the collaborative spirit that is so essential to academic excellence.

The Colchester Selectboard meets at 6:30 p.m. on the second and fourth Tuesday of each month at the Colchester Meeting House on Main Street, and LCATV also airs its meetings.

Remember, we can better tailor our communications with our community when we better understand what our community needs. We hope to encourage dialogue that allows us to be proactive and that enhances our collaboration. Please send us your comments and suggestions to csdwebmaster@csdvt.org.

When we’re all informed, we make a stronger community! Please encourage your friends and family to subscribe to the Spotlight.

Posted in Accountability, Community, Currently Colchester, District Office, General, Other Important Information, Town of Colchester, Videos

February 2014 Currently Colchester Published Today

The February 2014 edition of the Currently Colchester publication is scheduled to arrive in Colchester households today; many Colchester residents can look for it as part of the Colchester Sun, while those who do not receive the Colchester Sun should receive Currently Colchester as a stand-alone publication.

To view the February 2014 issue of Currently Colchester in electronic format, please click here.


Special reminder: have you seen this mini-film yet?


As a friendly reminder, Currently Colchester is designed to offer news and information relating to your school district and your town government in a format that is accessible to all residents, including those without convenient access to the Internet. We continue to strongly encourage our community members to access information about CSD and the Town of Colchester through our regularly updated electronic communications methods; we are working hard to provide a wide variety of avenues through which community members can receive information, including:

The Colchester School Board encourages community participation at their meetings; in fact, the board’s agenda solicits comments from the community at every meeting. (Join them at Colchester High School on the first and third Tuesday of each month beginning at 7:00 p.m. (You can also watch them on Lake Champlain Access Television.)

Can’t make the school board meetings? Click here to submit a question (or e-mail SchoolBoardQuestions@csdvt.org) and enter your contact information and question. During the meeting on the third Tuesday of every month, the school board will review the top questions and themes submitted.

We also host and encourage participation in numerous community events in all of your schools throughout the year to foster the collaborative spirit that is so essential to academic excellence.

The Colchester Selectboard meets at 6:30 p.m. on the second and fourth Tuesday of each month at the Colchester Meeting House on Main Street, and LCATV also airs its meetings.

Remember, we can better tailor our communications with our community when we better understand what our community needs. We hope to encourage dialogue that allows us to be proactive and that enhances our collaboration. Please send us your comments and suggestions to csdwebmaster@csdvt.org.

When we’re all informed, we make a stronger community! Please encourage your friends and family to subscribe to the Spotlight.

Posted in Accountability, Community, Currently Colchester, District Office, General, Other Important Information, Town of Colchester

The Spotlight Has Published 700 Articles!

Today, we celebrate the Spotlight’s seven hundredth (700th!) article!

700_Posts

Far more people have viewed the Spotlight than would be required to fill Gillette Stadium (home of the New England Patriots); the number of readers would fill twenty-eight sold-out performances at the Sydney Opera House in Australia. The Spotlight has been read in 121 countries around the world, and its readership is increasing all the time. Spotlight articles, many of which include photographs and videos, are offered in an effort to foster the open communication, transparency, accountability, and community spirit that are so important to our students’ education and to our community’s sense of involvement and engagement. The articles cover a wide variety of subjects in an effort to offer something for everyone.

We are working hard to provide a wide variety of avenues through which community members can receive information.

Communication2_s

How are we doing with our communications efforts? We would love to hear from you to find out what else you would like to know about your schools and your town. What other sorts of news and information would you like to see? What would you like to know more about? How can we better serve you? We can better tailor our communications with our community when we better understand what our community needs. We hope to encourage dialogue that allows us to be proactive and that enhances our collaboration. Please send us your comments and suggestions to csdwebmaster@csdvt.org.

Your schools and your town government are working hard to engage our community. Please encourage your friends and family to subscribe to The Spotlight. When we’re all informed, we make a stronger community!

Posted in Accountability, Community, Currently Colchester, District Office, General, Other Important Information, Town of Colchester

January 2014 Currently Colchester Published Today

Happy New Year!

The January 2014 edition of the Currently Colchester publication is scheduled to arrive in Colchester households today; many Colchester residents can look for it as part of the Colchester Sun, while those who do not receive the Colchester Sun should receive Currently Colchester as a stand-alone publication.

As a friendly reminder, Currently Colchester is designed to offer news and information relating to your school district and your town government in a format that is accessible to all residents, including those without convenient access to the Internet. We continue to strongly encourage our community members to access information about CSD and the Town of Colchester through our regularly updated electronic communications methods; we are working hard to provide a wide variety of avenues through which community members can receive information, including:

The Colchester School Board encourages community participation at their meetings; in fact, the board’s agenda solicits comments from the community at every meeting. (Join them at Colchester High School on the first and third Tuesday of each month beginning at 7:00 p.m. (You can also watch them on Lake Champlain Access Television.)

Can’t make the school board meetings? Click here to submit a question (or e-mail SchoolBoardQuestions@csdvt.org) and enter your contact information and question. During the meeting on the third Tuesday of every month, the school board will review the top questions and themes submitted.

We also host and encourage participation in numerous community events in all of your schools throughout the year to foster the collaborative spirit that is so essential to academic excellence.

The Colchester Selectboard meets at 6:30 p.m. on the second and fourth Tuesday of each month at the Colchester Meeting House on Main Street, and LCATV also airs its meetings.

Remember, we can better tailor our communications with our community when we better understand what our community needs. We hope to encourage dialogue that allows us to be proactive and that enhances our collaboration. Please send us your comments and suggestions to csdwebmaster@csdvt.org.

To view the January 2014 issue of Currently Colchester in electronic format, please click here.

Your schools and your town are working hard to engage our community. Please encourage your friends and family to subscribe to The Spotlight. When we’re all informed, we make a stronger community!

Posted in Community, Currently Colchester, General, Other Important Information, Town of Colchester

It’s Not Too Late to Enter the Logo Contest—You Could Win $250!

As we’d mentioned in our December issue of Currently Colchester, the Town of Colchester is sponsoring a logo contest. You could win $250 and become a part of Colchester’s branding initiative!

Please click here to view a .pdf containing additional information.

Enter by January 15! For more information, please contact Kathi Walker O’Reilly at koreilly@colchestervt.gov or call (802) 264-5508.

Your schools and your town government are working hard to engage our community. Please encourage your friends and family to subscribe to The Spotlight. When we’re all informed, we make a stronger community!

Posted in Accountability, Community, Currently Colchester, District Office, General, Other Important Information, Town of Colchester

December 2013 Currently Colchester Published Today

The December 2013 edition of the Currently Colchester publication is scheduled to arrive in Colchester households today; many Colchester residents can look for it as part of the Colchester Sun, while those who do not receive the Colchester Sun should receive Currently Colchester as a stand-alone publication.

As a friendly reminder, Currently Colchester is designed to offer news and information relating to your school district and your town government in a format that is accessible to all residents, including those without convenient access to the Internet. We continue to strongly encourage our community members to access information about CSD and the Town of Colchester through our regularly updated electronic communications methods; we are working hard to provide a wide variety of avenues through which community members can receive information, including:

The Colchester School Board encourages community participation at their meetings; in fact, the board’s agenda solicits comments from the community at every meeting. (Join them at Colchester High School on the first and third Tuesday of each month beginning at 7:00 p.m. (You can also watch them on Lake Champlain Access Television.)

Can’t make the school board meetings? Click here to submit a question (or e-mail SchoolBoardQuestions@csdvt.org) and enter your contact information and question. During the meeting on the third Tuesday of every month, the school board will review the top questions and themes submitted.

We also host and encourage participation in numerous community events in all of your schools throughout the year to foster the collaborative spirit that is so essential to academic excellence.

The Colchester Selectboard meets at 6:30 p.m. on the second and fourth Tuesday of each month at the Colchester Meeting House on Main Street, and LCATV also airs its meetings.

Remember, we can better tailor our communications with our community when we better understand what our community needs. We hope to encourage dialogue that allows us to be proactive and that enhances our collaboration. Please send us your comments and suggestions to csdwebmaster@csdvt.org.

To view the December 2013 issue of Currently Colchester in electronic format, please click here.

Your schools and your town are working hard to engage our community. Please encourage your friends and family to subscribe to The Spotlight. When we’re all informed, we make a stronger community!