The Vermont Principals Association
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VSA, VSBA, VCSEA, VPA Joint Statement of Support for Outright Vermont

To: President Pro Tem Ashe, Speaker Johnson, Senator Baruth, and Representative Webb

Re: Support for Outright Vermont

On August 26, 2020, Secretary of Education Dan French and Chief Financial Officer of the Agency of Education, Bill Bates, presented the AOE’s proposed FY2021 budget to the Vermont House Committee on Education. In that budget, the AOE proposed a $40,000 cut to Outright Vermont. Our associations strongly recommend that the General Assembly reject the proposed reduction.

In testimony on August 28, 2020 to the Vermont House Committee on Education, Outright Vermont Executive Director Dana Kaplan asked this: “Please recommend full restoration of the $60,000 legislative appropriation to Outright Vermont so that LGBT youth have a chance to live. Make no mistake about it, the stakes are that high.”

Our Associations wholeheartedly support Outright Vermont in this request. Outright Vermont provides crucial support to LGBTQ+ youth, their families, teachers and school districts. To the best of our knowledge, Outright Vermont is the only organization of its kind in Vermont and cutting funding would have a tremendous impact on LGBTQ+ students, especially in this unprecedented time of instability. We urge you to find savings elsewhere.

Thank you for your consideration.

Sue Ceglowski, Executive Director, Vermont School Boards Association
Jeff Francis, Executive Director, Vermont Superintendents Association
Jay Nichols, Executive Director, Vermont Principals’ Association
Traci Sawyers, Executive Director, Vermont Council of Special Education Administrators