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VT-HEC’s First Fund-Raising Effort

We Hope When People Consider Making Donations to a Worthy Cause They Think of the VT-HEC

For the first time in its 15 year existence the VT-HEC will be making an effort to raise funds through donations.  Begun in 2000 as a VT Department of Education program intended to focus on personnel shortages and training needs, the VT-HEC has seen the support from the state dwindle dramatically over the past few years. 2015 will be the first year that the VT-HEC will receive no funding from the VT Agency of Education.

The VT-HEC has been dedicated to offering high quality professional learning experiences that emphasize sequences of courses or workshops and maximize the application of learning. Past state support has allowed the VT-HEC to maintain long-standing programs, offer quality learning opportunities at lower cost and focus on areas that sometimes draw a lower number of participants but are of significant need. These offerings can be very important to schools, their staff and, most importantly, to students with such disabilities as Autism, young children needing Early Childhood programs, or even teens needing Driver Education.

Without the flexibility of that additional revenue, we are concerned that we won’t be able to maintain our focus on some of the areas where the availability of professional learning opportunities is very limited.   People have come to depend on the VT-HEC to provide quality trainings that cover topics that the state has not been able to. For example, we have presented series of very well-received “make & take” workshops focused on designing student-specific materials for young children with Autism or Developmental Disabilities. Those workshops are expensive to put on and may draw only twenty-five participants but they provide targeted professional learning that can immediately be applied to benefit children with very specific needs.

We don’t want to be limited to putting on single workshops on isolated topics that need to draw a hundred people. We know that is neither effective training nor living up to our mission of addressing unmet needs.

We hope that when people think about donating to a worthy cause they will give some consideration to supporting the VT-HEC so that we can continue the work we have been doing for over fifteen years. People that are interested in making a tax-deductible donation can go here:

Dennis has been the Director of the the VT-HEC since it was founded in 2000. He spent 16 years at the VT-DOE as Director of teams with various names that included: special education, Title I, health and wellness and other family and education support services. Prior to that Dennis worked at the Barre Town School (VT) starting as a special educator and serving many years as the Director of Student Support Services. He also spent 6 years as a classroom teacher grades 5-8 in NJ.

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