Restructuring Vermont’s Department Of Education

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Currently, the Department of Education is run by a board and the commissioner it appoints. Other departments in the state are agencies with secretaries appointed directly by the governor. A bill proposed in the House would make Education a state agency, would allow the governor to appoint that secretary and would alter the composition the state Board of Education.

Burlington Representative Joey Donovan, chair of the House Committee on Education, and Vermont School Boards Association Executive Director Steve Dale look at the pros and cons of House Bill 440, which would restructure the Department of Education.

Also on the program, Burlington Free Press reporter Candace Page fills us in on Vermont’s hazardous waste sites. Ninety percent or more of the 1,421 properties on Vermont’s list are not big Superfund cleanup areas. Instead, they’re from spills and leaks of gasoline, kerosene and home heating oil at service stations, mom-and-pop general stores, small businesses and even people’s homes. These small-scale spills can cause big problems for homeowners and small businesses in addition to Vermont’s environment.

Plus, engineering has always been a male-dominated profession. Only about 10 percent of engineers in this country are women. And that’s been about the same for the past 20 years. Earlier this month, The Center for Technology in Essex and Vermont Works for Women held their third annual "Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day," at Essex High School, to give high school girls a better idea of the different kinds of jobs that fall under the umbrella of engineering.

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