RIPTON RESIDENT ANZA Armstrong was accompanied to the polls on Tuesday by her dog, Bailey. She and scores of other Ripton residents were asked if their town should withdraw from the Addison Central School District. The referendum passed, 163-107. Now residents in the six other ACSD communities will decide whether to affirm Ripton’s vote.
Independent photo/Steve James
RIPTON — Ripton residents on Tuesday voted, 163-107, in favor of withdrawing from the Addison Central School District, while Weybridge residents opted against doing so by a 190-119 margin.
The six other ACSD member towns must now vote in favor of Ripton’s bid to leave the district if the proposed exodus is to proceed to the Vermont Board of Education. The state board would then decide whether the town could become its own independent school district.
Both the Ripton and Weybridge votes were triggered by citizens’ petitions seeking to prevent closure of their elementary schools. The ACSD board...
A YARD SIGN in Middlebury this week urges voters in Ripton to vote in favor of leaving the Addison Central School District.
Independent photo/Megan James
This story was corrected after it was originally posted to correct an error. We found out after the story went to press that the ACSD had updated its FAQ on the Ripton and Weybridge secession votes, and that the two towns would not absolutely loose their small schools grants from the state if they left the school district. Instead, they could seek continuation of their Small School grants if ultimately the state granted them permission to continue as independent school districts.
MIDDLEBURY — Ripton and Weybridge residents will go to the polls on Tuesday, Jan. 12, to decide whether they’d...
The Addison Independent received more letters regarding the upcoming ACSD secession votes than we had room to print in our Jan. 7 edition. Since the votes scheduled before our next print deadline, here are all the letters on this subject — the ones we printed, plus the other that appear only here on our website.
If we don’t trust ACSD leaders we should withdraw
By Joanna Doria
Don’t overlook the intangibles that small schools provide
By Saul Nurok
Keep Weybridge school open
By Kelsey and Chris Eberly of Weybridge
Small schools face long odds
By Jerry Shedd
Children are first priority...
Weybridge Elementary School was one of the primary reasons we chose Weybridge when we moved to the area in 2017. As our son has grown and is now set to begin kindergarten there this year, we've become even more excited for him to attend, as we've learned more about WES and its special place in the community.
While we took part in the ACSD Facilities Master Plan discussions, and were hopeful they would lead to a positive outcome, unfortunately there seems to be no place for WES in the plans. We support the withdrawal from ACSD because we deeply value the student-centric, nurturing learning...
My take is the waters are muddy and closing three or four small schools is an extreme option. Moving forward with this plan puts Weybridge in the challenging position of accepting this option versus pursuing a similarly extreme option of withdrawal.
Thus far a major focus has been on the tangible benefits of consolidation — finances and the physical state of individual buildings. While I appreciate each board member for their dedication and service to our community, I am concerned the board has overlooked many intangibles that can’t be easily quantified on a spreadsheet or neatly packed into...
JESSE WULFMAN, LEFT, and Brynn Kent are part of the creative team helping to promote the “FlossOFur” neck warmer, a product designed by fellow Emily Kiernan and the folks at Bee the Change. For every neck warmer they sell, Bee the Change will create 180 square feet of pollinator habitat.
Photo courtesy of Bee the Change
WEYBRIDGE — This fall, after Vermont’s monarch butterflies began their dangerous migration to Mexico and Florida, leaving behind hundreds of acres of fields bursting with seed, Emily Kiernan and her family ventured forth seeking milkweed pods.
Carefully harvesting one or two at a time, here and there, they amassed a total of about 4,000 pods, and brought them home.
“Home” for the Kiernans also happens to be the headquarters for Bee the Change, which plants habitats for pollinators, like the monarch butterfly, in the unused spaces in solar fields.
Setting up shop in their backyard they began...
RIPTON RESIDENT ERIN Robinson stands with her sons and a sign urging her fellow residents to vote in favor of a Jan. 12 referendum that could see her community begin the process of withdrawing from the Addison Central School District. Weybridge residents will field the same question on Jan. 12.
RIPTON/WEYBRIDGE — On Jan. 12 residents of Ripton and Weybridge will be asked if they’d like to withdraw their towns from the Addison Central School District (ACSD), in what has become a last-ditch, grassroots effort to prevent closure of their local elementary schools.
“It’s been an adventure so far, and I think it’s going to be an even greater adventure as we go along,” said Millard “Mac” Cox, one of the residents who petitioned for the Ripton secession vote. “We’re just hoping that we can be successful, being the smallest town in the district. We have the least political power, but we’re...
WEYBRIDGE RESIDENT MICHELE Hernandez Bayliss and her daughter, Alexia, visited all 251 Vermont communities this past summer, and they’re selling copies of a creative, colorful state map that commemorates their journey. Proceeds from sales of the map will be donated (minus expenses) to the Vermont Foodbank.
Photo courtesy of Michele Hernandez Bayliss
WEYBRIDGE — You’d think visiting all 251 Vermont municipalities over the course of a summer would be rewarding enough for two intrepid travelers.
But Weybridge resident Michele Hernandez Bayliss and her daughter, Alexia, have turned their epic road trip into an artistic fundraiser that will help fill the plates and bowls of the many hungry people through whose communities they travelled.
The Independent in September published a story about the mother-daughter odyssey through the Green Mountain State. The weeks-long trip provided the duo a safe way to explore their extended backyard, a journey...
EDWARD C. “ED” HAGGERTY, No. 12 in a Seton Hall Prep football game
BRIDGEPORT, Conn. — Edward “Ed” Clifford Haggerty died peacefully amidst loved ones on October 26, 2020, in Bridgeport, Connecticut. He was 87 years old and predeceased by his wife of 56 years, Margaret (Marti) Kerr Haggerty.
An international Public Relations Specialist and Advertising Executive, Ed worked on five continents during a 45-year career.
Ed was born in Newark, New Jersey, in 1933 to Anna and Earl C. Haggerty. He attended Seton Hall Preparatory School in South Orange, N.J., and in 2010 was inducted into the Seton Hall Prep Hall of Fame as part of their illustrious football team of...
The 2020 CROP Hunger Walk organizing committee: Patty Hallam, Beth Stanway, Frankie Dunleavy, Priscilla Baker, Laurie Jordan and Ellen McKay.
Every October, participants in Addison County’s CROP Hunger Walk raise awareness and money to relieve food insecurity in our community and around the world. The need grows ever greater as the coronavirus pandemic puts increasing financial pressure on families.
Despite COVID-19, organizers ramped up efforts in Addison County to provide nutritional resources for food shelves and programs.
While the pandemic prohibited the usual format of a large community walk on a single day, this year’s CROP Hunger Walk was reimagined so that individual walkers and small pods created their own walks under the...