Educator Preparation in Vermont

Teaching, Leading, and Learning in VT's Approved Programs


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Changes in the world of Praxis

There have been some important changes to the Vermont Praxis requirements lately:

As of August 31st, the Vermont AOE can no longer accept SAT or ACT scores in lieu of Praxis scores if the SAT/ACT was taken after September 1st 2014. If the SAT/ACT tests were taken prior to August 31, 2014, they can be used in lieu of Praxis I requirements. At this time, all applicants for licensure must take the three Core Academic Skills tests. Exemptions from this requirement are

  • candidates who qualify for a level II license and have at least three years of employment experience within the past seven years as a licensed educator in the endorsement area being sought
  • candidates who otherwise qualify for licensure or endorsement and who have achieved National Board Certification in the comparable endorsement area.

It is possible that these requirements will change in the future, but we do not have any timeline for when SAT or ACT scores will be accepted again. If you have questions regarding this change, please contact Sue Yesalonia at


In addition, ETS has announced additional testing windows effective immediately:

“We are pleased to announce that the Praxis Program will now be administering the Elementary Education: Multiple Subjects assessment (both the 5001 and 5031 series of subtests) in the December, 2014 window (December 8 – December 20) as well as the August, 2015 window.  With the addition of these two months, this assessment is now administered in every monthly testing window throughout the year. The assessments have been loaded into our registration system and candidates can now register for these tests in the December window immediately.”

Please don’t hesitate to contact the educator preparation office with questions about any of the info above at (802) 479-1714.

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The Cost of ROPA

We are working here in the AOE to evaluate the cost of a ROPA visit from our end, which leads us to the question… what does the ROPA process cost your program? Please let us know as much detail as you can; a general budget number is fine, but if you have detailed breakdowns, we’re happy to have them! All responses can be emailed to

Thanks for your help!



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Educator Quality Welcomes Shannon Miller!

Greeetings! Mprofiley name is Shannon Miller and I am the new Education Preparation Consultant for the Vermont Agency of Education. I have been a classroom teacher and technology coordinator for the past eight years, including work in Newfane, Vermont, and abroad in Lugano, Switzerland. I have taught high school and middle school English and history as well as elementary math.

In my position with the State of Vermont, I will be supporting the 17 different teacher preparation programs in the state as they prepare for ROPA accreditation. This support comes in many forms; from helping create and train visiting teams, helping programs with their Institutional Portfolios and during the visit itself. I am excited to work with teacher preparation programs and look forward to meeting many of you as I visit your school!

In the meantime, the educator preparation blog is a great place to get updated information. Please feel free to email me if you have any questions or concerns at or call (802) 479-1714.

VSBPE Releases a Tool for Educators and the Public

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The Vermont Standards Board for Professional Educators (VSBPE) is promoting high standards for teachers by releasing a video introduction to the Vermont Core Teaching Standards and InTASC Learning Progressions. The media piece introduces educators and the public to the new teaching standards and progressions that establish a coherent system of support for educators.

“One challenge the Board has faced since adopting the standards has been getting them into educators’ hands,” explains Steven John, VSBPE Board Chair. “This tool creates an opportunity for Vermont educators to better appreciate the purpose and use of the standards to support and guide their professional learning as they work to make good teaching great.”

Claudine Bedell, Associate Professor of Education at Saint Michael’s College describes the value of the media piece, saying: “For in-service teachers, this video clearly bridges the journey from the past to the present set of teaching standards. For pre-service teachers, this video provides an effective overview of current expectations that is both transparent and well-articulated.”

The video features Secretary Holcombe and is narrated by Jay Hoffman, 2013 Vermont Teacher of the Year.

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Level I Licensure Portfolio Revision Process

We’re excited to share that the Vermont Standards Board for Professional Educators (VSBPE) is working with the Vermont Council of Teacher Educators (VCTE) to revise the Level I Licensure Portfolio. On June 16th, members of VCTE met at the Agency of Education’s office in Barre to consider the VSBPE’s propo101_0717sed charge for the revision process and to consider how best to move forward. You can find out more by reviewing VCTE’s notes here: VCTE minutes June portfolio meeting



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Request for Comments

As you may or may not know, the VSBPE is going through a rules revision process. As part of this revision, the AOE staff and the VSBPE are considering increasing the number of weeks required for student teaching from twelve to thirteen. We know that most teacher preparation programs in Vermont are already doing more than twelve weeks and that such a change is in alignment with current research about the importance of clinical practice in the teacher preparation process. We are hoping you could take a moment to let us know how increasing the student teaching requirement from 12 to 13 weeks might impact your program. We will take all this input under advisement as we continue to improve the quality of our teacher preparation programs and thus the quality of learning opportunities for the students of Vermont.

Please send your comments to


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What Is the Common Core and Why Did Vermont Adopt It?

This blog entry was submitted by Vermont Secretary of Education Rebecca Holcombe:

The Common Core is an aspirationaldocument, one in a series of standards documents that seek to describe what all students should know and be able to do in order to thrive in college and careers in the 21stcentury.  Some students may strive beyond it; others may struggle to achieve it.  It is not a curriculum; curriculum is a local responsibility, and many of our districts are already far along in this process and beginning to see results.

In the Common Core is a shift to a focus on developing such qualities as logical thinking and reasoning from evidence and effective communication—qualities that prepare students for the complex work they will encounter when they grapple with problems in the work force or college.

Some of what Vermonters think of as critical outcomes for our children are described in the Common Core, while there are many other outcomes many feel are essential that are not captured or given high profile in the Core, including history and civics, the arts and scientific inquiry. However, because the Common Core defines a common set of “core” goals for our children in math and English language arts, it is a powerful tool for bringing teachers together to talk about what good teaching is and what good learning looks like.

The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) offer focus and coherence to the work in schools, so that all learning builds consistently towards shared goals. Again, decisions about curricula and the right intervention for any given child at any given moment are rightly left to educators in the field. Some teachers may seek to be more ambitious than the Common Core. Some will be gifted at personalizing and at teaching to ambitious goals through a variety of applied contexts, including in Career and Technical Education (CTE) programs.

What we ask is that good teachers do what they have always done: set high goals for all students, use their judgment to decide how to best help all students achieve those goals, and then use all available data to track growth and make strategic decisions about how to best support each learner.

 This is one of a series of blog posts that will appear regularly, authored by Secretary Holcombe. 

You can read more on the CCSS here or review our FAQ’s here.Image



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