Strands are mini-courses that occur each morning for 2-3 hours. Institute participants attend one strand throughout the four mornings. For information on an individual strand, including required readings, click on the title of the strand. Please indicate your first and second strand choices on the Individual Registration Form.

PLEASE NOTE: Some strands require participation of school teams while other strands allow individual participants to register.

The strands marked as "PBIS Teams Only" are designed for school teams (not individuals) that have completed certain PBIS readiness activities prior to the Institute.

The strands marked as "School Teams Only" are designed for school teams (not individuals); and generally do not have pre-requisites unless otherwise specified.

The strands marked as "Strand Open to Anyone" are designed for individuals and generally do not have pre-requisites.

It is important for your school team to carefully plan how each participant's strand choice will contribute to your team's overall implementation strategies that will be discussed during afternoon Team Time.

Strands to be registered for in teams ONLY

Strand A - VTPBIS Universal Training (PBIS teams only) - Presenters: VTPBIS State Trainers

VTPBIS Universal Training (for VTPBIS School Teams only)

VTPBIS State Team Trainers

 

Prerequisites:

School teams must have completed these activities to be eligible to attend this training.

Description:

Eligible School Leadership Teams will be supported with content and facilitation needed to complete their PBIS School-wide Implementation Plan within a Multi-tiered System of Supports (MTSS) framework. Restorative principles will be infused in the training. Teams will prepare for PBIS roll-out to staff, students, and family members.

Learning Objectives:

School Leadership Teams will:
• Develop the school-wide system needed for PBIS implementation
• Finalize 3-5 positively-stated school-wide behavioral expectations
• Establish a system for acknowledging students at the individual, classroom, and school-wide levels
• Create lessons for teaching school-wide expectations
• Develop consistent practices and procedures for responding to minor and major behavior problems
• Plan a system for collecting and reporting school-wide data for use in decision-making

Who Should Attend?

School leadership teams consisting of representative members from the school including a building principal or assistant principal, Supervisory Union/Supervisory District coordinator and school-based PBIS coordinator.  Wondering if this strand is for you? Contact Amy Wheeler-Sutton at amy.wheeler-sutton@uvm.edu.

Pre-readings & Materials:

Coming Soon

Strand B - VTPBIS Targeted Training (PBIS teams only) - Presenters: VTPBIS State Trainers

VTPBIS Targeted Training (for VTPBIS School Teams only)

VTPBIS State Team Trainers

 

Prerequisites:

School Teams must have completed these activities to be eligible to attend this training.

Description:

School leadership teams that have implemented PBIS at the Universal level with fidelity (as indicated by the Tiered Fidelity Inventory) are eligible to attend this strand that will provide the content and facilitation needed to prepare for implementation at the targeted level within a Multi-Tiered System of Supports.

Learning Objectives:

School Leadership Teams will:

• Increase knowledge and fluency about the Targeted Level of VTPBIS
• Finalize systems needed at the Targeted Level
• Complete an inventory of the formal and informal targeted supports currently available; identify gaps; and prioritize practices for implementation
• Learn about Check-In, Check-Out and Teacher Check, Connect, and Expect and plan for implementation
• Develop a foundational understanding of Functional Behavior Analysis and Universal Screening and plan to integrate this into their Targeted Level of PBIS.
• Plan for roll out of PBIS at the Targeted Level.

Who Should Attend:

School leadership teams that have implemented VTPBIS at the Universal Level and have achieved a score of 80/80 on their post-implementation SET or 70% on the most recent Tiered Fidelity Inventory (completed within the past four months) are eligible to attend this training on the Targeted Level of PBIS. Wondering if this strand is for you? Contact Amy Wheeler-Sutton at amy.wheeler-sutton@uvm.edu.

The following will be handed out at the Institute (one per team):

Responding to Problem Behavior in Schools : The Behavior Education Program
by Leanne S. Hawken, Deanne A. Crone, Robert H. Horner

Pre-readings & Materials:

Coming Soon

Strand C - VTPBIS Intensive Training (PBIS teams only) - Presenters: VTPBIS State Trainers

VTPBIS Intensive Training (for Eligible VTPBIS School Teams only)

VTPBIS State Team Trainers

 

Prerequisites:

School leadership teams that have implemented PBIS at the Targeted Level and have completed these activities are eligible to attend this training.

Description:

This training will provide the content and facilitation needed to support school teams in preparing for implementation at the Intensive Level.

Learning Objectives:

School Leadership teams will:
• Refine and strengthen an Inventory of Targeted practices that can be adapted for individualized supports 
• Increase knowledge and fluency about the Intensive Level of VTPBiS
• Identify the systems functions, responsibilities, and roles at the Intensive Level
• Understand the features of individualized supports including: 

o Teaming 
o Setting Goals 
o Assessment 
o Intervention(s)
o Evaluation

• Develop strategies for building effective Behavior Support Plans
• Explore the data systems needed to facilitate effective Behavior Support Plans
• Plan for roll out of the Intensive level

Who Should Attend?

VTPBIS leadership team participants should include, at a minimum, the administrator, a teacher, special educator, and staff trained in FBA. Wondering if this strand is for you? Contact Amy Wheeler-Sutton at amy.wheeler-sutton@uvm.edu.

Pre-Readings & Materials:

Coming Soon

Strand D - Refresher in VTPBIS Features (PBIS teams only) - Presenters: VTPBIS State Trainers

Refresher in VTPBIS Features (for VTPBIS School Teams only)

VTPBIS State Team Trainers

 

Prerequisites:

Teams from currently implementing VTPBIS Schools are eligible to attend this training. It is recommended that VTPBIS schools attend this strand if they are experiencing common implementation dips such as loss of momentum, low implementation fidelity, and high rates of staff and/or administrator turnover. A pre-training survey will be sent to all participants to assess individual learning and team planning needs. In addition, schools attending this strand must complete the Tiered Fidelity Inventory (TFI) and Self-Assessment Survey (SAS) no later than May 31st. For schools previously trained in PBIS that are no longer implementing PBIS, please contact your State TA to determine if this strand is the best option for your school.

Description:

This strand will serve as a review of PBIS data, systems, and practices across the tiers within a Multi-Tiered System of Supports (MTSS).

Learning Objectives:

Participants will learn about common implementation dips and the latest practical strategies for overcoming implementation fatigue. Participants will learn how to analyze their own data for increased fidelity of implementation and improved student outcomes, develop a maintenance plan for revitalization and continuance improvement, and walk away with a “tool-kit” of strategies and skills necessary to support new staff in PBIS features.

This strand will differentiate content and activities based on individual school needs and school data, and participants will have many opportunities to learn from the successes and challenges of other schools.

Who Should Attend?

VTPBIS leadership teams including School Coordinator and Administrator, SU/SD Coordinator, and other staff representatives. Wondering if this strand is for you? Contact Amy Wheeler-Sutton at amy.wheeler-sutton@uvm.edu.

Pre-Readings & Materials:

Coming Soon

 

Strand E - Strengthening and Building Upon the Interconnected Systems Framework (invited school teams only) - National and State PBIS Partners

Refresher in VTPBIS Features (for Invited School Teams only)

National and State PBIS Partners

 

Description:

This strand is for key leaders of the three Project AWARE funded districts to build capacity for supporting school teams to organize and enhance ISF installation efforts. This will be an opportunity to reflect on what’s in place and what’s needed in the school, home, and community - for all, some, and few students. Detailed strand agenda will be developed based on review of existing data and input from AWARE LEA coordinators.

District and school-based teams will come away with a solid installation action plan for returning to school in the fall. Vermont Project AWARE State and National Partners will provide technical assistance and share current resources and strategies for supporting the LEAs.

Who should attend?

Project AWARE LEA Coordinators and key representatives of District Community Leadership Teams as well as school-based administrators and PBIS Coordinators.

Pre-Readings & Materials:

Coming Soon

 

CANCELLED! Strand F - Partnering around VT Early MTSS: Strengthening the Connection with VTmtss (school teams only) - Presenter: Lori Meyer

CANCELLED!

Partnering around VT Early MTSS: Strengthening the Connection with VTmtss (school teams only)

Lori Meyer


Description:

This strand is for early childhood and elementary school leaders who want a facilitated experience to learn more deeply about Vermont's Early MTSS and its alignment with VTmtss. Using multiple Vermont exemplars and drawing upon implementation and improvement science, Dr. Meyer will guide leaders/stakeholders to learn more about the innovations and tools associated with Vermont Early MTSS. Participants will discuss and address the challenges and potentials for implementing and aligning Early MTSS with VTmtss across early learning and formal elementary schooling. Participants will develop plans for piloting Early MTSS in their unique SU/SD contexts and communities with optional support from Dr. Meyer and the Early MTSS leadership teams. Multiple examples will be shared, from presenters' experiences along with images and video.

Learning Objectives:

As a result of attending this session, participants will be able to:

  • Explain the importance of Vermont Early MTSS for families and young children;
  • Understand the importance for aligning Early MTSS and VTmtss;
  • Assess what is needed in their SU/SD/Community to support the implementation of Vermont Early MTSS and linkages from Early MTSS to VTmtss;
  • Build infrastructure to support implementation of Vermont Early MTSS in alignment with VTmtss;
  • Locate implementation resources for Early MTSS;
  • Develop plans for piloting Early MTSS in their unique SU/SD contexts and communities

Who Should Attend:

Teams only/Advanced (Representatives from SU/SD Early Childhood & Elementary Education Leadership required); Community childcare provider leadership recommended, if possible.


Pre-Readings &Materials:

Coming Soon

Bio:

Lori Erbrederis Meyer is an Associate Professor in the Department of Education at the University of Vermont, where she teaches in the Early Childhood Education and Early Childhood Special Education programs. Dr. Meyer’s research focuses on young children with and without disabilities and their families within the context of early care and education systems. Specifically, she is interested in contemporary classroom environments, approaches, and system-wide infrastructure necessary to support the implementation of innovations to support young children’s social and emotional development and well-being. As a former inclusive preschool teacher, Dr. Meyer is dedicated to increasing the use of recommended practices in early childhood intervention and translating research into practice.

Strand G - Deepening and Expanding Restorative Approaches within a Multi-Tiered System of Supports (school teams only) - Presenter: Jon Kidde

Deepening and Expanding Restorative Approaches within a Multi-Tiered System of Supports

Jon Kidde

 

Description:

For over a decade, Vermont schools have been building a multi-tiered system of supports (MTSS) framework for social, emotional, behavioral, and academic achievement. The interest around the use of restorative approaches continues to grow nationally and in Vermont schools. A restorative approach involves principle-based processes and practices that can be applied to help things go right, as well as respond when things go wrong. This whole-school approach links well within the Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS) framework.

Through active participation and using the opportunities to apply course content to their schools, participants will:
• Recall current understanding of restorative approaches and MTSS
• Define restorative approaches and MTSS in their own words
• Deepen their knowledge of restorative approaches
• Strengthen the capacity of their team
• View policies and practices through a new lens and notice ways to apply a restorative approach to an MTSS framework
• Consider fidelity, process, and outcomes measures to assess progress toward goals
• Develop an action plan grounded in implementation science for integrating restorative principles and practices within an MTSS, including considerations for how to engage and educate staff, parents, and youth
• Connect to a community of colleagues who are exploring and working to integrate restorative approaches and MTSS

Who Should Attend:

This advanced strand is intended for school teams looking to dig deeper into restorative approaches, explore the integration and alignment of a restorative approach within the MTSS framework at the systems level, and build the capacity of their team. All participants should have a strong foundational knowledge of restorative approaches. Please register with a team of at least 2-3 (preferably including an administrator).

Pre-Readings &Materials:

Coming Soon

Bio:

Jon Kidde has been exploring the concepts of restorative justice (RJ) for 20 years and has played a critical role in the conceptualization, application, and enhancement of restorative justice within different contexts—education, justice, and within organizations in several states. Jon is currently an independent consultant focused on restorative justice and school discipline & juvenile justice reform living in Vermont. Jon received an MSW degree from the School of Social Welfare at University of California – Berkeley. He co-authored Restorative Justice: A Working Guide for Our Schools with Rita Alfred during the initial implementation of RJ within Oakland Unified School District. He is a Certified Dialogue Education Teacher.

Strands Open to Anyone

Strand H - Centering Equity to Promote Social/Emotional/Behavioral Success (school team recommended, but strand open to anyone) - Presenter: Kent McIntosh

Centering Equity to Promote Social/Emotional/Behavioral Success (school team recommended, but strand open to anyone)

Kent McIntosh

 

Description:

This strand will provide an opportunity for individuals/teams to consider social/emotional/behavioral interventions and supports within MTSS through the mindsets of equity, anti-bias, and cultural responsiveness. Participants will have the opportunity to examine their behavior support systems for fit with the values and needs of students, families, and communities, with an aim to enrich their implementation of disciplinary practices (identifying and teaching expectations, providing positive feedback, and responding to unwanted behaviors) that are culturally responsive and equitable.


Learning Objectives:

Participants will:

  • Describe how we make discipline decisions and the influence of bias on these decisions
  • Identify when our implicit biases are most likely to affect our discipline decisions
  • Examine our school-wide systems for hidden bias and refine to increase equity
  • Implement classroom practices to increase equity in school discipline

Who Should Attend?

Any educators who want to examine implicit bias and develop the systems, data, and practices needed to improve equity and anti-bias. While not required, it is recommended that individuals attend as a team with someone else from their school.

Pre-Readings & Materials:

Coming Soon

Bio:

Kent McIntosh, PhD, is the Philip H. Knight Chair of Special Education at the University of Oregon and Director of Educational and Community Supports, a research unit in the College of Education. His current research focuses on implementation and sustainability of school-based interventions, reducing racial discipline disparities, and integrated academic and behavior support. He is lead author of over 80 peer reviewed journal articles, presenter of over 50 keynote addresses, and principal or co-investigator of over $60 million in federal grant funding. He is Co-Director of the Center on Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports and lead of the Center’s Equity Workgroup, as well as a founding member of the PBIS-SCP Canada Network and a member of the Board of Directors of the Association for Positive Behavior Support.

Strand I - Restorative Approaches Foundations & Implementation Readiness (strand open to anyone) - Presenter: Annie O'Shaughnessy

Restorative Approaches Foundations & Implementation Readiness (strand open to anyone)

Annie O'Shaughnessy

 

Description:

Use of Restorative Approaches (RA) in schools has been linked to improved school climate, greater school connectedness, increased student attendance, improved test scores, increased graduation rates, reduced discipline referrals, reductions in violent and serious incidents, and decreases in punitive and exclusionary discipline responses.

At the universal level, RA focuses on building and strengthening relationships in order to build a classroom and school culture where everyone feels a sense of safety, belonging, respect, and equal voice. When harm has been done, RA provides the capacity, skill, and motivation for students and adults to name harm when they see it or experience it, acknowledge harm they’ve done, and seek authentic ways to repair it that lead to learning growth and stronger relationships. RA complements and supports other relationally based, non-punitive work within schools including PBIS, SEL, mindfulness, trauma-informed teaching, Responsive Classroom, Conscious Discipline, and equity.

Strand participants will be introduced to and actively explore the what, why, and how of the restorative approach at a personal, classroom, and school-wide level. While not an exhaustive training in all aspects of RA, this strand intends to position participants to lead the integration of restorative principles and practices in the schools and/or classrooms where they work and develop a school’s readiness for full implementation efforts.

Data systems and measurement tools will include a Readiness assessment to explore whether your school is ready to begin implementing restorative approaches; Fidelity assessment tools school-wide and in the classroom; and a Self-assessment tool for staff development. In addition, we will review other indicators that should be measures connected to your implementation efforts.

The presenter and guest speakers are educators and change leaders who can answer questions and share the challenges and successes of their efforts at the classroom and school-wide level.

Learning Objectives:

• Examine and then experience the circle process as a way to identify personal values and relate them to some of the core assumptions of RA.
• Review the “why”, “what” and “how” of RA.
• Define RA in your own words and in a way that is relevant for school staff, students, and your community—answering the question “Why RA in our school?”
• Identify the different uses for restorative circles and develop some actionable goals for using them in your school as you begin to explore RA.
• Explore a coaching model for shifting the way we talk to kids and each other, review and practice restorative communication with a trauma-informed perspective.
• Review what RA looks like in action in schools using the “Balance in the Process” as a framework, and assess your own school’s assets, readiness, and needs related to the possible implementation of RA.
• Examine different models for implementing RA from VT schools and districts and beyond, and assess which might be a best fit for your school.
• Use implementation strategies to map out some next steps and consider the use of outcome and fidelity measures to assess progress.
• Share your vision for integrating RA in your classroom or school and hear from others with the goal of developing a network of support.

Who Should Attend

This strand is recommended not only for educators who desire a comprehensive introduction to restorative practices and principles in order to lead school change, but also for teachers who wish to use the restorative approach to transform their own classrooms. No prior experience is needed. Those familiar with use of the restorative approach will have ample opportunities to share their experience and develop a deeper understanding.

Pre-Readings & Materials:

Coming Soon

Bio:

Annie O'Shaughnessy - One of the greatest strengths of her seminars, identified by participants, is the broad collection of stories she brings from the front line as an educator, circle keeper, and now as a consultant who has been in over 40 schools statewide, interacting and hearing from over 2,000 educators. She also brings the stories from the class journals of over 100 educators who have taken her 3-credit course where they have shared their stories about RA.

Annie's dedication to Restorative Practices began with her experiences with circle work more than 20 years ago. Having participated in and led circles personally and professionally since the 90s around the country and in the classroom, she has witnessed the tremendous impact of these experiences on her own and other’s lives, and the essential role mindfulness plays in successful restorative work. Currently, she teaches English half-time at the Center for Technology, Essex; teaches Mindfulness and Restorative Practices courses for educators through CVEDC; and trains educators in schools throughout the state. Annie is passionately committed to supporting teachers and schools in creating more mindful and restorative learning communities. The 180+ hours of clinical training she has received as a teacher at the Centerpoint School, alongside 80 hours of training in RJ and an M.Ed in Mindfulness for Educators has prepared her well to be of benefit to students, teachers, and schools as they work to meet the challenges facing them.

Strand J - Shining a Light on Classrooms: Building Habits of Positive and Proactive Practices (school team recommended, but strand open to anyone) - Presenter: Brandi Simonsen

Shining a Light on Classrooms: Building Habits of Positive and Proactive Practices (school team recommended, but strand open to anyone)

Brandi Simonsen

 

Description:

In this strand, we will discuss how to implement and differentiate positive and proactive behavioral practices within classroom settings. Content will link back to the features of the VTmtss framework. Examples across a range of grade levels and contexts (in person, hybrid, and remote) for each practice, system, and data feature will be shared.

Learning Objectives:

After attending this strand, participants will be able to:

  • Describe the core features of positive and proactive classroom practices to support all students and provide examples appropriate to their school context (e.g., grade level, ability level);
  • Discuss how we develop habits and create an action plan to develop habits of effective classroom practices; and
  • Identify data and systems features needed to scale habits of effective classroom practices.

Who Should Attend:

K-12 classroom teachers who want to improve their use of positive and proactive classroom practices and those who support educators. While not required, it is recommended that individuals attend as a team with someone else from their school.

Pre-Readings & Materials:

Coming Soon

Bio:

Brandi Simonsen, PhD is a professor of Special Education and the Co-Director of the Center for Behavioral Education and Research (CBER; www.cber.org) at the University of Connecticut. She is also the Co-Director of the National Technical Assistance Center on Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS; www.pbis.org), Co-Principal Investigator of the National Multi-Tiered System of Supports Research Network (www.mtss.org), and a Senior Advisor to the National Center on Intensive Interventions (intensiveintervention.org).

Strand K - Creating Trauma Responsive School Communities: Interweaving the innovations & lessons of 2020 with pre-existing approaches to fostering resilience. (school team recommended, but strand open to anyone) - Presenter: Joelle van Lent

Creating Trauma Responsive School Communities: Interweaving the innovations & lessons of 2020 with pre-existing approaches to fostering resilience. (school team recommended, but strand open to anyone)

Joelle van Lent

 

Description:

The goal of this strand is to create system-wide change and improved resilience for the students, school community, families, and the community in which the students live.
It is designed from current research on the key components and protective factors that foster resilience in children who are contending with a wide variety of stressors including developmental trauma, mental health challenges, intellectual and learning variations, developmental disabilities, and chronic adversity within their environment. 

Dr. van Lent will identify essential elements and approaches for creating environments in which children can thrive. Included will be a discussion of the impact of early neglect and trauma on a child's development, specifically the child's ability to form healthy relationships, respond to context, engage in learning, and develop a positive self-concept.  The strand will interweave discussion on how a global pandemic, tumultuous political landscape, exacerbation of inequities, and other adversities of 2020/2021 changed, deepened, highlighted, and informed our understanding of trauma, stress, and resilience as it relates to creating schools as healing communities. This strand will include frequent use of examples from school, classroom, student, family, and community scenarios in which these practices were utilized.

Participants in this course can be effective agents of change and positive influence through knowledge learned in this course to engage successfully, advocate effectively, and share information in ways that offer validation and positive change. 

This strand emphasizes a universal and proactive approach to fostering resilience. The training offers information, resources, and strategies to support systemic and comprehensive efforts to improve relational health, engagement, motivation, emotional regulation, and executive functioning for all students. In doing so, this approach helps identify the impact of stress and adversity of a wide variety on healthy development while gaining knowledge in how to interweave individualized approaches. This training is offered with specific attention effective collaboration around trauma responsive disciplinary approaches that help a community recognize and reduce inequities, as well as reduce barriers to student success.

Learning Objectives:

By attending this strand, participants will:

  • Learn about various forms of stress and current research relevant to fostering resilience in children. The training will focus on the protective factors and key elements that improve a child's ability to prevail in context of ongoing stressors of a wide variety.    
  • Explore the impact of chronic exposure to trauma on child development, specifically focusing on attachment capacity, neurological functioning, affect regulation, and identity formation.   
  • Learn strategies and interventions that foster the development of essential skills that improve a child's engagement and functioning.
  • Examine concepts related to the use of trauma responsive discipline to promote student engagement and diminish systemic racism and inequities within a school community.
  • Understand the concepts of Compassion Fatigue and Compassion Satisfaction, as well as increased awareness of the associated risk factors and environmental vulnerabilities.
  • Actively engage in developing ideas for self-care and effective professional collaboration.
  • Develop strategies and obtain resources to effectively collaborate with community partners and engage parents in the school community.

Who Should Attend?

This strand is appropriate for both those who are relatively new to this topic, as well as those who have developed more advanced expertise. The information will be relevant to preschool through grade 12, as well as examples provided for this full range. The ideal participation option is for a school team to attend the full strand together, however, that is not required.  Participants should attend each session in full. The interactive engagement component is highly utilized and so full participation is required.

Pre-Readings & Materials:

Coming Soon

Bio:

Dr. Joelle van Lent is a licensed psychologist with over 20 years of experience working with children, families, and child serving agencies.  Dr. van Lent has expertise as a therapist, clinician, evaluator, consultant, and trainer.  Her work focuses on child and adolescent mental health, family therapy, trauma, and Autism Spectrum Disorder.  Dr. van Lent’s approach is geared toward fostering resilience and creating communities that support healthy development.  She is currently in private practice based in the northwestern part of Vermont and works across the state with schools and agencies.

CANCELLED! - Strand L - SEL: Excellence, Equity, and Connection for all (strand open to anyone) - Presenter: Rebecca Lallier

CANCELLED!

SEL: Excellence, Equity, and Connection for all (strand open to anyone)

Rebecca Lallier

 

Description:

Social-emotional learning (SEL) is an integral part of education and human development. When implemented effectively, it promotes positive social, emotional, and academic outcomes for students; contributes to teacher well-being, classroom management skills, and teacher-student relationships; and builds the skills, knowledge, and mindsets needed to examine prejudices and biases, evaluate social norms and systemic inequities, and promote community well-being.

This strand will focus on developing, strengthening, planning, and evaluating systemic SEL implementation to ensure an equitable learning environment, enhance existing academic and behavioral MTSS, and nurture an inclusive school climate and culture. Participants will examine the newly-broadened CASEL framework, competencies, standards, and proficiencies; investigate evidence-based practices, including explicit instruction, effective teaching practices, and integration of SEL and academic curriculum; and explore adult social-emotional and cultural competence. Strategies for ensuring equity, increasing buy-in, addressing barriers, building authentic relationships with families and communities, and supporting staff individual and relational SEL will be explored.

This strand will address how SEL goals and practices can be integrated with universal, targeted, and intensive academic and behavioral supports as part of MTSS, and also how they can be adapted to hybrid and remote environments. Video examples of SEL practices in action will be shared. Input from VT districts where SEL implementation is in place will also be included.

Learning Objectives:

Upon completion of this strand, participants will have:

• gathered research data to use when advocating for SEL to stakeholders;
• explored SEL foundations, competencies, components, & approaches;
• explored ways to infuse and align SEL implementation with equity efforts and goals;
• identified adult SEL supports to improve staff practice and well-being;
• reflected upon their own social emotional competencies, strengths, and needs;
• explored evidence-based SEL practices, programming, standards, and curricula
• considered ways to build authentic partnerships with families;
• strategized how to anticipate and address implementation challenges;
• prioritized SEL professional development needs;
• identified ways in which SEL assessment can be used to determine needs, inform
practice, and support continuous improvement;
• initiated action planning for SEL implementation.

    Who Should Attend:

    Team planning time is built into the strand, so it is preferable to have more than one person from a team attend this strand together.

    Pre-Readings & Materials:

    Coming Soon

    Bio:

    Rebecca Lallier, M.Ed. is a TA, Implementation Coach, and Trainer for Vermont PBIS. She spent 11 years as PBIS coordinator at the Dothan Brook School, a nine-year exemplar school, navigating all aspects of PBIS from initial implementation through revitalization, full implementation at all three tiers, and continuous improvement. Rebecca has 23 years of experience as a school counselor and was the 2016 Vermont School Counselor of the Year and a 2017 National ASCA School Counselor of the Year finalist. She is passionate about the importance of building trust and relationships while helping schools and teams center equity for all students, build on strengths, and solve problems to increase fidelity of PBIS implementation. Rebecca is especially interested in how PBIS, SEL, adult resilience, and positive school climate support and strengthen one another.

    Strand M - Expanding and Enhancing Targeted Interventions for Social and Academic Success (school team recommended, but strand open to anyone) - Presenters: Kristin Beswick and Cassandra Townshend

    Expanding and Enhancing Targeted Interventions for Social and Academic Success  (school team recommended, but strand open to anyone)

    Kristin Beswick and Cassandra Townshend

     

    Description:

    In this strand, participants will explore how to broaden and enhance targeted interventions. Designed with a PBIS framework in mind, but accessible within any framework, participants and teams will learn to keep universal strategies paramount while tightening up, enhancing, and developing new targeted interventions that build upon Universal practices. Primary goals include moving beyond "check-in/check- out,” using a function-based lens for matching interventions to student needs, and learning strategies for efficient group interventions to avoid the potential pitfalls of "universally individualized" interventions. Several classroom and school-wide examples will be provided. All systems, data, and practices will be presented with consideration to various learning environments.

    This strand will highlight the features of VTmtss in the following ways: 
    - Expertise needed to implement interventions with fidelity, review intervention effectiveness, train others, etc.;
    - Comprehensive and Balanced Assessments such as the use of surveys and screeners that are either research validated or supported by research;
    - Effective Collaboration: how to communicate about targeted interventions in an effective way;
    - Comprehensive and Systemic Approach: Focus on the teaming infrastructure needed to support students who need additional interventions;
    - High quality instruction/intervention: Selecting interventions that are evidence-based, matched to function, and can be delivered with fidelity.

    Learning Objectives:

    Participants will:

    • Expand current thinking about student needs and how to meet them;
    • Strengthen and enhance your school's inventory of targeted interventions;
    • Identify methods to collect and use data to monitor progress and make decisions about duration, modification, and fading;
    • Hear examples from multiple Vermont schools; and
    • Plan a process for supporting staff to implement targeted interventions with fidelity

    Who Should Attend:

    EST members; VTPBIS Targeted Team members, school counselors, special educators, others.

    Pre-Readings & Materials:

    Coming Soon

    Bios:

    Kristin Beswick has worked as an Implementation Coach and Trainer for Vermont PBIS for 8 years.  She has worked in the NEK as a Behavior Specialist for 18 years.  Prior to Vermont, she worked as a School Psychologist conducting evaluations, supporting school teams and consulting with administrators.  She has provided Universal, Targeted and Refresher Trainings to school leadership teams.

    Cassandra Townshend is the Director of Special Education at Charlotte Central School and Director of Behavior Systems for Champlain Valley School District. Her experience includes work as a high school social worker, elementary/middle school behavior specialist, outpatient therapist, behavior system coordinator/coach, and most recently, the coordinator of training and development for the BEST/PBIS Project at UVM’s Center on Disability & Community Inclusion.

    CANCELLED! - Strand N - Teaching on Empty: Understanding How to Support Struggling Students and Ourselves (strand open to anyone) - Presenter: Lance Metayer

    CANCELLED!

    Teaching on Empty: Understanding How to Support Struggling Students and Ourselves (strand open to anyone)

    Lance Metayer

     

    Description:

    2020 was a wild year in education and has had a far-reaching impact on both student and educator mental wellness. This strand will engage educators, paraprofessionals, special educators, and administrators in learning skills to support youth who may be struggling with an emerging mental health challenge and will explore the personal impact of compassion fatigue and vicarious trauma within the school setting. Youth Mental Health First Aid introduces educators to the unique risk factors and warning signs of mental health problems in students grades 5 - 12, builds understanding of the importance of early intervention, and teaches educators strategies for how to help a student in crisis or experiencing a mental health challenge. Youth Mental Health First Aid uses role-playing and simulations to demonstrate how to assess a mental health crisis; learn interventions to provide initial help; and connect young people to professional, peer, social, and self-help care. Participants will increase their confidence in approaching and supporting students who are experiencing a mental health challenge or crisis, learn strategies and skills to support students in the classroom and will increase their understanding of Vermont's statewide mental health system, available mental health interventions, and crisis resources available throughout the state.

    Additionally, this strand will explore the impact of compassion fatigue and vicarious trauma and its impact on educators, students, and the school community.  Participants will increase their awareness and understanding of the warning signs of compassion fatigue and the impact on job satisfaction, personal wellness, relationships, and mental health. Structured discussion and activities will engage participants in learning and developing personal as well as schoolwide strategies to support themselves and their educational teams to create healthy and positive classrooms and school communities.  

    Over 2,500 Vermont educators and school staff have been trained in Youth Mental Health First Aid. Student and educator mental health impacts everyone within the school community. This strand is focusing on wellness and resilience within both students and educators. Creating a healthy school community not only should focus on supporting our students but should also focus on supporting educator's mental wellness. This topic is relevant to all learning environments. Youth Mental Health First Aid focuses on recognizing signs and symptoms of mental health challenges in youth across learning environments and prepares participants to provide intervention and support in person or virtually.


    Learning Objectives:

    • Increased understanding of the unique warning signs of common mental health challenges in youth
    • Learn what to do and say to support a youth who is struggling
    • Increase awareness of the resources and interventions to support student mental health
    • Understand how to support a youth who is experiencing a mental health crisis
    • Increase awareness of compassion fatigue within oneself, our peers, and school community
    • Identify and understand personal and systemic risk factors that increase the risk of compassion fatigue and vicarious trauma
    • Learn strategies to support educator mental wellness and create a personal action plan
     

    Who Should Attend:

    This training is appropriate for all school staff and administrators. Youth Mental Health First Aid is specifically designed for grades 5-12. Concepts from the YMHFA training can be directly adapted to grades Pre-K - 4.


    Pre-Readings & Materials:

    Coming Soon

    Bio:

    Lance Metayer has been spent the last fifteen years working with youth and families who have been impacted by developmental trauma and toxic stress.  Lance is a Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor and the Team Leader of School Based Clinical Services at Northwestern Counseling and Support Services.  Through his work, he oversees a team of mental health clinicians providing therapy to children and adolescents in schools throughout Franklin and Grand Isle County. In addition, Lance is the Statewide Project Coordinator for Community FIRST, a SAMHSA grant that has developed a statewide network of Youth/Adult Mental Health First Aid instructors to provide Y/MHFA training to educators, foster parents, and community members throughout the state.  Lance is passionate about providing mental health education to reduce mental health sigma, increase early intervention, and to improve social conditions for individuals impacted by mental illness.

    Strand O - Inspired Educator, Engaged Learner: Experiential, Brain-Based Approaches to Build Community, Integrate Academic and Social-Emotional Learning, and Create Lasting Meaningful Lessons (strand open to anyone) - Presenter: Jen Stanchfield

    Inspired Educator, Engaged Learner: Experiential, Brain-Based Approaches to Build Community, Integrate Academic and Social-Emotional Learning, and Create Lasting Meaningful Lessons (strand open to anyone)

    Jen Stanchfield

     

    Description:

    Join this interactive strand and fill your teaching, counseling, and leadership toolbox with novel and dynamic brain-based techniques to inspire, motivate, and promote engagement and buy-in. Take away experiential methods that empower students to take ownership of learning, practice social-emotional skills, and build a positive, connected, inclusive, and supportive in-person, remote, or hybrid classroom community. Enliven academic and social-emotional skills content delivery and assessment with active student-centered activities to enhance involvement and retention. Teach, practice, and assess academics in a trauma-informed and equitable way while cultivating communication, collaboration, problem-solving, self and social awareness, decision-making, and reflection. Facilitate meaningful review and reflection to increase relevancy and understanding. Get learners moving, connecting, talking, and reflecting to create lasting lessons. Leave with practical strategies, creative inspiration, and new perspectives on your role as an educator or counselor. Strand content will be full of examples of practical application of these practices. Participants will take away strategies that will help them build a positive environment for learning, actively engage learners, differentiate instruction, develop social-emotional skills, and promote a positive culture in their school community.
     

    Learning Objectives:

    Participants Will Take Away:

    • Interactive, evidence-informed, and student-centered methods to build a supportive online, hybrid, or in-person learning community while enlivening academic lessons, differentiating instruction, and promoting social and emotional learning - and the classroom structures to make them a success
    • Practical ways to promote student voice, choice, buy-in, ownership through positive and responsive classroom management techniques
    • Compelling research from the field of educational neuroscience and its impact on learning, instructional design and delivery, and social-emotional skills development
    • Trauma-informed approaches for developing responsive and nurturing relationships and culture teacher to student, peer to peer, and for school/family community building events
    • Novel and dynamic techniques to teach review and reinforce both academic content and social and emotional learning that help learners apply material in meaningful, relevant ways.
    • Techniques to cultivate social and emotional skills such as communication, social problem-solving, relationship skills, collaboration, self-regulation, emotional expression, and conflict resolution
    • Reflective tools to increase depth of understanding, meaning, relevance, and application to future learning
    • Community building and dialogue activities and ideas for engaging families, teachers, and students in "Family and Schools Together" events
    • The role of the educator as guide, and the importance of flexibility, attitude, adaptation, and awareness of group and individual needs and differences
    • Practical strategies to engage and connect learners, promote equity and inclusion, create a positive and supportive learning community, and maximize both social-emotional learning and academic outcomes


    Who Should Attend:

    This strand is open to all roles, experience, and grade levels

    Pre-Readings & Materials:

    Coming Soon

    Bio:

    Jen Stanchfield, MS, works with schools worldwide to increase meaningful engagement, integration of social-emotional learning with academic content, and community building in the classroom and beyond. Jen's depth of experience, creativity, and knowledge of educational theory and practice is evident in her innovative yet practical workshops and publications that incorporate the art of facilitation and teaching with neuroscience and pedagogical research. Jen has worked as a teacher, a clinician in mental health treatment centers, an adventure educator, and professional training and organizational teambuilding. She earned her master’s degree in Experiential Education from Minnesota State University and continues to pursue the latest research from the educational neuroscience field. Through these diverse experiences, she has developed an extensive repertoire of evidence-informed experiential activities, tools, strategies to engage, and informative professional development, books, and teaching resources. She is the author of Tips and Tools for the Art of Experiential Group Facilitation, and Inspired Educator, Inspired Learner: Experiential, Brain-Based Activities, and Strategies to Engage, Motivate, and Create Lasting Lessons.

    Basic contact and social media info:

    Jennifer Stanchfield
    www.experientialtools.com
    802-490-0147 Cell

    Visit the Inspired Educator Blog or sign up for the Experiential Tools Newsletter to receive articles on group facilitation and teaching.
    Check out Jen's books: Inspired Educator, Inspired Learner and Tips & Tools for the Art of Experiential Facilitation.

    Follow Experiential Tools on Facebook or Twitter, Instagram or LinkedIn

    Join Jen for an upcoming workshop visit: www.experientialtools.com for a full workshop schedule.

    CANCELLED! - Strand P - Youth Rights, Youth Voice, and Youth Engagement: Community-wide Strategies to Building Youth Resilience (strand open to anyone) - Presenter: Holly Morehouse

    CANCELLED!

    Youth Rights, Youth Voice, and Youth Engagement: Community-wide Strategies to Building Youth Resilience (strand open to anyone)

    Holly Morehouse

     

    Description:

    This strand will explore important aspects of education, learning, and youth development that happen outside the school day and in the community. We will challenge assumptions about where and when learning and growth can happen and highlight the effectiveness of community-wide strategies to build youth resilience, including changes to the built environment, parent co-collaboration efforts, authentic youth voice and engagement, and quality out-of-school time programs.

    This topic is broad-based and multi-faceted. A wide variety of strategies are being implemented in communities and can take place across a variety of learning environments. Stakeholders from five Vermont communities involved in a 5-year effort to change the local environment to better support positive youth development and resilience will be invited to speak. Several youth guest speakers will also be invited.

    This strand fits within the VTmtss Framework in the following ways:

    Comprehensive and Systemic Approach: this strand introduces a community-wide approach to assessing and adapting the built environment across multiple domains (e.g., school, community, peer groups, families) in order to build youth resilience. It does not focus on a single sector, nor on a single sub-population of youth, but rather looks at creating systems that support all young people.

    Effective Collaboration: The model and strategies that will be discussed in this strand are community-based. Stakeholders involved in current efforts include town government, school officials, teachers, mental health professionals, hospitals and pediatricians, prevention networks, afterschool programs, community-organizations, libraries, families, youth-serving organizations, etc.

    High-quality Instruction and Intervention: Best practices are evidence-informed and based on data from national and international models for youth resilience, as well as Vermont-specific data collected annually in the participating communities through the Vermont Youth Project.

    Comprehensive and Balanced Assessment: Our approach does not focus on a single avenue, sector, or strategy. Instead, it is about bringing a broad group of stakeholders together to focus on youth resilience in their community. An overview of the model can be seen on our website: http://www.vermontafterschool.org/vyp/about-vyp/

    Expertise to Improve Equitable Outcomes: We use real-time data from a youth survey implemented each fall to inform community and stakeholder discussions. We help communities build expertise through workshops, communities of practices, technical assistance, group facilitation, and other resources. Our work is informed by an equity/inclusion assessment tool as well as community asset mapping.


    Learning Objectives:

    - Participants will build an understanding of the important role that engaging out-of-school time opportunities and other community-wide strategies play in supporting the learning, growth, and resilience of young people.
    - Participants will develop an awareness of different national models for supporting young people and what can be learned from outcomes seen in countries such as Finland and Iceland.
    - Participants will gain an appreciation for all that is required to support authentic youth engagement, including connections with families, schools, and communities.


    Who Should Attend:

    The topic material applies to a wide audience and could be applicable to both individuals and teams. The principles and strategies that will be presented benefit children of all ages; however, our case study work is largely focused on students in middle/high school (young adolescents and teens).


    Pre-Readings & Materials:

    Coming Soon

    Bio:

    The Vermont Youth Project at Vermont Afterschool aims to create an environment in every community where youth have opportunities and spaces to have a voice, belong, explore hobbies and passions, connect with peers and caring adults, and be themselves. We work with diverse stakeholder groups to move the focus of resilience efforts upstream by exploring the societal and environmental factors ("causes of the causes") that lead to risk and protective factors that influence the behaviors of youth. With this information, communities are able to create strategies that support increasing protective factors in youth through healthy (healthily?) built environments.

    CANCELLED! - Strand Q - Strengthening Protective Factors and Promoting Resilience for All: Strategies for Paraprofessionals (strand for paraprofessionals only) - Presenters: Tracy Harris and Ana Kolbach

    CANCELLED!

    Strengthening Protective Factors and Promoting Resilience for All: Strategies for Paraprofessionals (strand open to paraprofessionals only)

    Tracy Harris and Ana Kolbach

     

    Description:

    This introductory and interactive strand is designed for paraprofessionals. The strand will provide general information about trauma and its impact on students' availability for learning. The majority of time will be spent on how to strengthen protective factors that will promote resilience and potentially counteract the impact of toxic stress and trauma.

    Participants will be invited to build their own "menu" of concrete support ideas to use with their students in times of need. Included will be an introduction to in-person and remote spaces and support that may be accessed when a student needs to practice mindfulness, use sensory tools, and other self-regulation strategies. The home-school partnership will be highlighted, and participants will be given ideas to explore with their supervisors on how, when, where, why to best connect with their students' family members.   

    The strand will introduce participants to needs-based practices and supports that are evidence-based and that align with the State of Vermont Resilience messaging. The strategies introduced will be geared toward those that can be implemented by paraprofessionals but will be in line with the concepts and rationales that classroom teachers, special educators, and other professional support staff have been trained on. An emphasis will be placed upon effective collaboration and shared expertise among staff, families, community partners, and students.  All of these things will be rooted in a schoolwide PBIS/VTmtss framework that focuses on systems, data, and practices.

    School representatives (professional and paraprofessional) as well as students and parents will be invited to share some of their positive experiences.

    Learning Objectives:

    Participants will:

    • Define adverse childhood experiences, toxic stress, and trauma and explore how these things affect students' ability to access school programming;
    • Create a visual representation that illustrates protective factors as mitigating the above and promoting resilience;
    • Describe and give examples of protective factors that can be built into students' programs;
    • Identify examples of vicarious trauma and explore strategies for self-care;
    • Examine the opportunities and limits of one's role in the context of a student's team and within the school-wide systems of support.

    Who Should Attend?

    This is an introductory-level strand, being offered for paraprofessionals working with students in grades K-12. Presenters are available to meet with teams during team times to provide technical assistance about paraprofessional roles to promote resilience.

    Bios:

    Tracy Harris has been with the Vermont Agency of Education for seven years, as Coordinator for Behavioral Supports. As a member of the special education team at the Agency, she provides professional development and technical assistance on an array of special education and general education topics, with an emphasis on social emotional learning and behavioral interventions and supports. Prior to that, Tracy was Assistant Director and Integration Specialist at The Baird School, an independent school that provides special education and therapeutic interventions for students with significant social, emotional, and behavioral challenges. Tracy’s career began in the Winooski School District, as a Speech-Language Pathologist, Service Coordinator, and Team Leader. She instructed a course at the University of Vermont’s graduate program in Communication Sciences and Disorders.  Tracy has spoken at numerous conferences around Vermont and the Northeast, and authored a chapter in a book for educators on collaborative teaming and co-teaching.

     

    CANCELLED! - Strand R - Making the Shift: Foundations of Project-Based Learning (strand open to anyone) - Presenters: Kyle Anderson, Emily Leute, and Pat Fitzsimmons

    CANCELLED!

    Strand R - Making the Shift: Foundations of Project-Based Learning (strand open to anyone)

    Kyle Anderson, Emily Leute, and Pat Fitzsimmons

     

    Description:

    Making the Shift: Foundations of Project-Based Learning is an introductory-level professional learning opportunity to support educators in developing the knowledge, skills, and tools needed to begin shifting their instruction to a Project-Based Learning approach. Along the way, participants will identify components of their current instructional practice that can be integrated into a Project-Based Learning unit. The strand will culminate in individually or collaboratively written Project-Based Learning plans adapted from current lessons or units to align with essential elements and phases of the approach. Foundations of Project-Based Learning will operate within a framework of four key components of the approach identified as essential by Vermont educators. These include (1) a driving question anchored in academic content, (2) a student planned original concept that responds to the challenge, (3) active learning and guided inquiry opportunities, and (4) a culminating task or product that is presented to a public audience. Participants will be guided through samples, strategies, and discussions of these elements and phases as they identify ways to apply them to their context.

    Learning Objectives:

    • Understand the foundational elements of the Project-Based Learning approach.
    • Develop strategies to implement Project-Based Learning using lessons participants already teach.
    • Discuss and develop strategies to implement Project-Based Learning in a remote, hybrid, or in-person environments.
    • Write and present a Project-Based Learning unit using the foundational elements and phases. 

    Who Should Attend:

    Individuals or Teams of Educators
    Entry level
    K -12
    All Content Areas

    Bios:

    Kyle Anderson, Arts Specialist, Vermont Agency of Education
    Kyle is the Arts Specialist at the Vermont Agency of Education (AOE). He has had extensive training in arts education, arts and literacy integration, and project-based learning. Before his role as the AOE Arts Specialist, he has worked as a middle school gifted and talented educator and advanced program resource teacher, an arts education professional development coordinator and coach, and an elementary art teacher. 

    Emily Leute, English Language Arts Specialist, Vermont Agency of Education
    Emily
    joined the Proficiency-Based Learning Team at the Vermont Agency of Education after 13 years in the classroom, during which time she taught high school English and drama at Enosburg Falls High School in northern Vermont. An active proponent of Proficiency-Based Learning (PBL) in her school, Emily was excited to join the team that would be supporting the state in making the shift to a more meaningful and equitable form of student assessment and authentic learning. Emily received her Master’s degree in arts integration and advocates for incorporating art and other forms of creative expression into any content area as a means of exploring concepts and communicating learning.

    Pat Fitzsimmons, Proficiency-Based Learning Team Leader, Vermont Agency of Education
    Pat’s
    work at the Vermont Agency of Education is focused on collaborating with educators to implement proficiency-based learning (PBL) and assessment systems that are student-centered. She has worked with various stakeholders to construct a Vermont Portrait of a Graduate and co-authored numerous documents related to PBL. Before moving to state-level work, Pat was the Science Specialist for the Barre Supervisory Union in Vermont. She also fondly remembers her first fourteen years in public school as a kindergarten teacher. Pat was the first kindergarten teacher in Vermont to receive the Presidential Award for Excellence in Science Education.