Tossing the State Board of Education?

Jennifer Samuelson (Chair, Vermont State Board of Education) joined the Senate Education Committee on Thursday. Chairman Campion explained the reason for having her in was to see what the Board needs and what would be helpful. He also wanted some feedback on a House bill intended to merge the State Board of Education (SBE) into the Agency of Education (AOE).

The feedback from AOE on this concept that Samuelson shared was that the amount of time devoted to supporting the Board depends on the issues before the SBE as well as administrative and legal supports required in statute. They currently estimated 10-12 hours per month in general support.

The second bucket of time AOE spends supporting the board is on legal work such as when they reworked the 2200 Series rules. That required expertise and time and can be substantial. The AOE’s general counsel relayed that during that process they were devoting up to 20 hours per week.

Combining this work with other administrative supports for the board from AOE and the Attorney General’s office might total 25 hours per week normally and up to 40 during a rulemaking process.

Campion reiterated they are just trying to get a general idea, while also delving into the roles, responsibilities and what resources AOE devotes when they could be doing other things.

Samuelson did point out they have rulemaking responsibilities and quasi-judicial appellate functions and we want to “get it right.”

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