small schools

MIDDLEBURY — A group of Middlebury-area residents is circulating a petition aimed at forcing two major changes to the Addison Central School District charter that they said would give voters in the seven ACSD-member communities more power in preserving their local elementary schools if they are targeted for future closure. The group has dubbed itself “Save Our Schools ACSD” and is largely made up of residents from Ripton and Weybridge — two of the ACSD’s smallest (by enrollment) elementary schools. The ACSD includes the grade schools in Bridport, Cornwall, Middlebury, Ripton, Salisbury,...
I am writing in regards to Act 46 and the potential closure of small schools in the state of Vermont, particularly the Ripton Elementary School. My name is Rob Risch and I was formerly the Teaching-Principal of the Ripton Hollow School from 1983-1989, as well as the (at the time, new) Ripton Elementary School from 1989-1996. My commitment and bias to/for small schools should therefore be evident.  Prior to working in Ripton I spent seven years as a classroom teacher in Middlebury at the Mary Hogan School as well as the College Street School. I am firmly convinced that the quality of the...

GOV. PHIL SCOTT listens to Jesse Brooks, director of prevention for the United Way of Addison County, during a discussion of substance-use issues with local kids at the Bristol Hub Teen Center on Monday. Independent photo/Steve James
MIDDLEBURY — Gov. Phil Scott on Monday urged school officials to think more creatively about sharing resources — including school consolidations — amid declining student numbers and rising public education expenses. Scott addressed the prospect of public school closings, the plight of the homeless, water quality and other issues during an interview at the Addison Independent that included several of his top cabinet members, including Education Secretary Daniel French, Natural Resources Secretary Julie Moore and Agency of Human Services Secretary Michael Smith. Scott and his entourage made the...
As advocates of small schools and those supporting school consolidation come to terms with declining enrollments and rising costs, here’s the conundrum both face: consolidation is the right short-term answer to cost-cutting to contain higher and higher taxes, but it’s the wrong answer to building a stronger, more diverse statewide economy. It’s a trickier question when asking which most benefits the student, because no two people are the same and what benefit one may not work as well for another. But no matter how you dice it, as Gov. Phil Scott said in a meeting in the Addison Independent’s...
The Addison Central School District (ACSD) school board is intending to “consolidate” three small town schools within the district by beginning a “facilities study” to determine which schools are or are not worthy of remaining open. The Ripton Elementary School would be a likely target of these planned school closings. Although the board appears to be focused on which school facilities would save the most money through closure, I argue that there is more to a small Vermont school than just financial considerations. Each small school in Vermont reflects the needs and diversity of the community...

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Addison County Independent

58 Maple Street
Middlebury, VT 05753

Phone: 802.388.4944
Fax: 802.388.3100