Spring 2017

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Arigatou! Merci! Danke! Xiè xie nin! ¡Gracias! Spasibo! Shukran Lak!

Thanks to everyone who attended this year's conference in March. Despite some less-than-desirable weather, there was a lot of networking and learning that happened! We hope that it was a worthwhile day for those who attended.

Upcoming CI Professional Development

There are many upcoming opportunities to learn more about teaching with CI. The closest comes from our own Elissa McLean in Brattleboro. Some of you may have met her at the conference; she had a table for her company, Express Fluency. You can learn more about her conference in August here. (She has some AMAZING folks coming to present, so be sure to check out the details.)

Other PD opportunities:

iFLT, Denver, CO, 11-14 July

NTPRS, San Antonio, TX, 17-21 July

Express Fluency, Brattleboro, VT, 7-10 August

TCI Maine, Lewiston, ME, 12-13 October

Resources from the conference

Here are some resources from this year's conference. If you attended and have not yet completed our evaluation, please do that here: Conference evaluation

Laurie's website (with links to resources)

Laurie's blog

Allison's presentation

Allison's blog post about her Parallel Storyline activity in class (with videos)

Distinguished Teacher Award

It was a very special moment at this year's conference when Principal Bill Olsen spoke about this year's VFLA Distinguished Teacher, Patricia Alonso, Spanish teacher at Rutland High School. Patricia is 100% deserving of this award, and we thank her for her dedication to serving Rutland's students. A wonderful feature on Patricia and the VFLA; you can see this piece here.

We would also like to congratulate the other DT nominees:

Patrick LaClair, Latin, Lamoille Union Middle & High School

Allison Litten, French, Marion Cross School

Colleen O'Connell, French and Spanish, Woodstock Union Middle and High School

Conference Notes

The VFLA works very hard to bring you a useful and engaging conference, and we take your feedback very seriously. Below are a few notes regarding this year's conference and general VFLA workings.

  • The business meeting that occurred before lunch is a requirement for the VFLA as an organization as outlined in our bylaws. "Article 4.2: The board of directors shall govern the Association and its actions and shall present a report of its activities and finances to members of the Association at its convention."
  • We are a 100% volunteer board and in many ways cannot operate like a business or larger non-profit. We understand that for some of you it would be much easier to pay for membership and the conference with a purchase order as opposed to submitting for reimbursement from your schools. Unfortunately we are unable to process POs at this time. If we believe it is something that we can easily incorporate into our procedures in the future, you will be the first to know.
  • We received a request to allow someone from Rutland cable access to film the presentation of the Distinguished Teacher award. This was the only portion of the day that was filmed. We respect the privacy of our members and will work to ensure all members are comfortable with the publicity of the conference. Next year we will set up "do not photo/film" tables at the conference.

Contest Winners' Reception

It was a pleasure to see so many of our poster and essay contest winners, their teachers, and family members at the State House last week. Governor Phil Scott made a proclamation honoring language teachers, and several state legislators stopped by. In addition, Secretary of Education Rebecca Holcombe was in attendance. We appreciate the hard work of all of our teachers and students who prove that language learning is an important part of a well-rounded education.
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Governor Scott's proclamation recognizing Vermont language teachers

Educational Travel Service, Inc.

Vermont Educators Organizing Student Travel Since 1987!

ETS is pleased to recognize excellence in local foreign language teaching.

Congratulations to the nominees of the 2017 VFLA Distinguished Teacher Award and to the recipient, Patricia Alonso. Patricia and her students have traveled abroad with ETS the last two years and Colleen O’Connell, a nominee, has been a long-standing ETS client. A shout out to them both.

Now let ETS help YOU plan your trip.

Here is what your Vermont colleagues have to say about working with ETS:

“Meticulously planned itineraries

Centrally located hotels

Local restaurants with menu choices

Flexibility with itinerary planning and while on tour

Outstanding guides

I wouldn’t use anyone else.”

Bernie Dillon, Milton High School – French trip

“We return to them year after year for their wealth of knowledge

Extremely professional and responsive communication

Competitive pricing

Commitment to quality student travel

Personal attention to every detail

Simply the best!”

Theresa Mazza-Anthony, World Language CAS and Spanish Teacher

South Burlington High School – trips to Japan, Spain, Germany & France

While others herd, we guide you...

Contact us for a quote. Email Lee @: hoehn0613@gmail.com

Tim Kahn (802-578-8221), Jan Cronin (802-233-3287)

Lee Hoehn (802-863-2879 or 802-578-8208)

Website: www.educationaltravelservice.com

Language in the News

Action Needed

Your action is needed to safeguard important programs that benefit world languages and have been slated for reductions or elimination.

Trump Administration releases budget blueprint, calls for elimination of programs supporting world languages

The Trump Administration's budget blueprint for FY2018 includes a $54m increase to Defense spending, to be offset by cuts to programs and agencies in the domestic, non-defense discretionary portion of the budget. Among the programs tapped for reductions or elimination are programs which support world languages:

  • Department of Education International Education Programs (Title VI/Fulbright-Hays)
  • National Endowment for the Humanities
  • Department of State Educational and Cultural Exchange Programs

TAKE ACTION to oppose the elimination of Title VI/Fulbright-Hays and the elimination of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Recent articles about languages and language learning

EF Educational Tours

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For over 50 years EF has been working toward one

global mission: Opening the World Through Education.

Together with educators worldwide, we provide

experiential learning opportunities that promote critical

thinking, problem solving, collaboration, and global

competence. Teaching these skills is essential—teaching

them in London, Paris, or Beijing is transformative.

Connect with us at VFLA: Meet with members of the

EF team in the exhibit area to learn more about how you

can open your students’ eyes to new cultures and




Maggie Lenahan

Global Education Consultant



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The VFLA would like to extend its congratulations to Sally Rivard who was one of this year's NECTFL Mead Fellows. Sally is currently serving as a Secondary Instructional Coach at Lake Region UHS in Orleans. Her project, "Building a Sustainable Professional Support Program for World Language Educators," will benefit teachers throughout the state. Sally writes, "The goal of my Mead Proposal is to create, implement and participate in a grass-roots, sustainable professional support program for Vermont world language teachers. In order to attract, grow and keep world class language teachers, I believe we must provide opportunities for colleagueship and mentoring to those who are new to the profession, new to the job or new to an instructional strategy." Contact Sally if you are interested in participating in this program.

The Mead Fellowship supports an individual in the development of a project that contributes to the foreign language teaching profession and advances quality language instruction. Click here to learn more about the SANS Inc. Mead Fellowship Program.

About the VFLA

The VFLA is an organization designed to promote more effective instruction and study of foreign language, encourage research and experimentation in the learning and teaching of these languages, and to provide for professional growth among its members.