UVM announces new education institute

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(Host) The University of Vermont announced Friday it will establish a national education institute. University officials say the goal is to teach school administrators how to support at-risk students, and to prevent them from failing in school.

Institute Director Susan Hasazi explains the program’s strategy:

(Hasazi) “The way we wanted to do this was to get to the professors who are teaching educational leadership who are teaching people to become principals and superintendents. There’s an increased need for more information in those programs to ensure that people who are training to principals and superintendents have the knowledge base they need to most appropriately serve these populations of children.”

(Host) Hasazi says some of the risk factors they will examine include learning disabilities, poverty and students who speak English as a second language.

The principal of Burlington High School attended Friday’s announcement. Amy Mellancamp says the new program will close a gap formerly filled by on-the-job training:

(Mellancamp) “So I really see the advantage of this program as a brining some of that learning right up front to aspiring leaders aspiring principals, where there’ll be more case studies, more real-life examples of the issues educators are facing so they can start grappling with those from the beginning and just walk into a school with a lot more confidence that they can address those issues with their teachers and their students.”

(Host) UVM is collaborating with seven universities across the country to develop and distribute training materials. The program is being established through a one-million dollar donation.

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