Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Clubs - Using Callback to Meet

Callback is a daily 30 minute segment of the U-32 schedule that students have used (Tuesday through Friday) for the last few years to get support from a teacher, re-perform assignments, or makeup missing assignments.  Late last year, a few clubs began to meet during the callback time and students were also invited to participate in a monthly dilemma-solving fishbowl discussion.  This year, callback is booming with options that offer enrichment and empower our students.

What are these options?

While Mondays are still reserved for time with their TA for extended activities, scheduling of callback, and Naviance, the rest of the week provides a variety of offerings for High School students and even a few options for Middle School students.


Bridging the Gap (formerly known as Youth and Adults Transforming Schools Together (YATST) - A student group who, in the past has surveyed students and faculty, and then worked through that data to determine areas of disconnect.  Bridging the gap recommended that teachers create feedback forms to gather information from students about how classes are going - a reflection form that allows teachers to reflect on their teaching, what's going well and what might benefit from changes.

GLAMM (Gay, Lesbian, and many more)- uses callback in a variety of ways.  Students spend the time planning educational activities for the school such as presentations and lunch tables w/ info to hand out.  Students also plan fun events for the club members like movie nights, field trips, and other leadership experiences.  Most importantly, this callback time offers students a safe space to join together to talk about current events and personal experiences. (Cairsten Keese - Advisor)

Student Activists - Seeking Social Justice, this group uses callback for planning how to combat prejudice speech and actions within our school.  They are currently working on some professional development for U-32 faculty and staff and sharing with students ways to stand up against prejudice.  (Meg Allison and Amy Koenigbauer - Advisors)


Peer Mentoring - Allows high school students to mentor a middle school student in a big brother/big sister fashion with weekly meetings, game playing and discussion. (Nate Lovitz - Advisor)

BLAMM (Blacks, Latinos, and many more) - Modeled after GLAMM, this new group started last month by setting their norms and determining goals for the year.  The group seeks to develop a safe community to talk about race, ethnicity, and culture. (Krista Dy - Advisor)


Book group - there is a book group meeting every Thursday in the library during callback.  MS and HS participants meet every other week to respond to analysis questions and discuss the book they've been reading. (Laura Abbene and Meg Allison - Advisors)

Middle School Book Group (Courtesy of U-32 Library Commons)

Green Team - Green Team is working to reduce our school's environmental footprint.  We are working on several projects including:  solar installations, bulk milk machine (to reduce milk cartons), and composting.  Green team is also doing a school wide trash audit to study U-32's waste production and determine how to reduce it. (Ellen Cooke and Karen Liebermann - Advisors)


"Are You Into It?" - AYII is a student-led callback that encourages a culture of respect by promoting healthy, consensual relationships. The first few meetings have focused on the question: What IS the relationship/dating/hook up culture like at U-32? Members seek to normalize the conversation around healthy relationships as well as set up a support system for students in need. Long-term goals include educating peers on healthy sexual decision-making and focusing on solutions through possible student-led assemblies. (Meg Falby - Advisor)

Student Advisory Group - Our principal, has invited freshman and sophomore students to join him in addressing issues associated with the proficiency system.  Students will help to identify areas of confusion, misunderstandings or concerns and then address them with faculty, students and parents. (Steven Dellinger-Pate - Advisor)

Other groups meet monthly or as needed:  

Student Council subcommittees regularly use callback for their meetings. Examples include subcommittees on the Food Drive, public relations, and student outreach. Student Council will also host a monthly callback for students to attend to share their concerns.
(Deb Stevens and Kit Walker - Advisors)

Photo courtesy of U-32 Student Council

Our food service director, Brian, has been reaching out to learn more about what students would like to see in the cafeteria. At the request of some of our vegan students, he has made some changes. They will meet again soon to follow up and gather more recommendations.  He is also meeting regularly with Junior Iron Chef competitors to discuss the competition and plan their recipes.

The Executive Council, which includes student reps from all of the above groups, meets monthly to discuss the big picture of what is going on and determine what supports might be necessary for groups to move forward with their ideas. (Lisa Laplante - Advisor)

Other groups that meet regularly are the Acting Up, Branching Out, Middle School Leadership, Prom Committee, Robotics advisors, Senior TA reps, and Student Reps to the School Board.

Interested in potentially joining one of these groups?  A club fair will be held on Tuesday, December 19th during A and C lunches!

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Flexible Pathways v.1: Tech Center Programs

Central Vermont Career Center (CVCC), formally known as the Barre Tech Center, is our local tech center.  They currently have some great programs including:  Automotive Technology, Baking Arts, Building Trades, Cosmetology, Culinary Arts, Digital Media Arts, Electrical Technology, Emergency Services, Exploratory Tech., Human Services, Natural Resources and Sustainability, Plumbing and Heating, Cooperative Education.  Our students have been enjoying these programs for years and doing well as evidenced by the quarter 1 awards!

In addition, CVCC will be adding a Medical Professions Program that will be taking applications this spring for Fall 2018.  This program will offer dual enrollment opportunities in Human Biology with opportunities for clinical shadowing.  It will introduce students to a variety of careers including:  nursing, radiography, physical and occupational therapy, emergency services, home health, phlebotomy, dental assisting, surgical services, and acute care!

Did you know students may attend other tech or career centers?  If our local tech center does not have the career path you or your student is seeking to follow - another center might.  A student may apply to another tech center only after determining that the program is not offered at their local center or if they have been denied access to their choice program at CVCC.  What's the catch?  Well, transportation.  Although the programming will be paid for, you need to find your own way to programs outside of CVCC.  If you do have a method of transportation, it's a great idea to check out all of your options!

Here are some of those centers most accessible to our students in alphabetical order:

Burlington Technical Center has Aviation, Criminal Justice, and Medical and Sports Sciences.
Center for Technology Essex has Dentistry.
Green Mountain Technology & Career Center has Power Sport Technology.
Randolph Technical Career Center has Agricultural Tech, Criminal Justice, Diesel Tech and Education/Social Services.
River Bend Career and Tech Center has Criminal Justice, Heavy Equipment, and Small Engines.

Each tech center has it's own spring application process, all of which can be found on their websites.  Check out these options for flexible pathways in your education!