Miscellaneous Education Changes (S.133) - April 7, 2023

Senator Campion joined the House Education Committee on Friday to discuss S.133. He began with proficiency-based learning and explained they were trying to determine if the actually had a “handle on what was out there.” This is what led, indirectly, to the curriculum audit idea that is in the bill.

Campion mentioned the “legendary story” of the valedictorian student who could not get into UVM because of math requirements. This is what they are trying to avoid, he noted.

Another piece of the bill “in play” with the Appropriations Committee is $35K for marketing the State Colleges and Independent Colleges in order to drive attendance.

He also mentioned they still wanted to address training for teachers to instruct drivers education. They are exploring a joint pilot project concept for road trainings between the Agency of Education and the Agency of Transportation.

Representative Buss asked about national trends surrounding proficiency-based learning (PBL). Campion conveyed that Maine is “pulling back a little.” He then stated they really got here under Flexible Pathways and PBL was never specified in any bill, but was initiated under Act 77.

Representative Austin asked about data on student performance before and after the implementation of PBL. Campion agreed it was a great idea to “look at test scores before and after.” Austin was also questioned if a student who transfers between Vermont school districts would have the same evaluation experience. Chairman Conlon interjected that PBL is “almost universal” in 50 states now. Campion seemed surprised by this statement.

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