Letter: Consolidation will have positive impact

I am writing this letter as the Superintendent of the Southwest Vermont Supervisory Union. In my view, the consolidation presented under Act 46 will have a positive impact on the delivery of education to the learners of our member school districts. Act 46 creates the flexibility to allow a rapid response to educational needs as they arise: the ability to shift personnel and resources (money and otherwise.) This is a change from how we currently operate. Our resources are restricted by district. An example might be if an additional Kindergarten teacher was due to unexpected increased enrollment numbers and Mt. Anthony Union School District had unexpended funds in their budget, currently we could not use those MAU funds to meet that need. Under the Act 46 consolidation, the school board would have the ability to do exactly that—what was needed for the benefit of our learners.

Another example could be if there were a school that was underperforming, the board would have the ability to concentrate resources in that school, drawn from all sources, to improve performance and student learning.

A consolidated district that has fewer meetings allows administrators to attend to the work at hand—providing our students with the highest quality education.

I believe that it is a positive that I could have a school board that is able to educate the whole child, to view the entire spectrum of education PreK through Grade 12. This consolidation, under Act 46, would give us a huge advantage in future and strategic planning.

It is our duty as educators to prepare our students to be ready to learn and be ready to become participating citizens and community members. I strongly believe Act 46 will allow us to do this task to the best of our ability. We live regionally—we should educate regionally.

James R. Culkeen

Superintendent of Schools

Southwest Vermont Supervisory Union


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