Vermont Agency of Education

03/31/2020 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 03/31/2020 17:02

COVID-19 Guidance for Vermont Schools

Please note that this page contains information and guidance specific to Vermont schools and Supervisory Unions/Supervisory Districts (SU/SDs). Vermonters can find the most up-to-date and complete information on state and nationwide COVID-19 response, including information direct from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, on the Vermont Department of Health's COVID-19 website.

Guidance Index

School Closure Guidance | Special Education Guidance| Guidance for School Nutrition Program Operations |Childcare for Essential Persons Information | Financial Guidance | School Closure Guidance for Other Programs | Guidance for Maintenance of Learning | Guidance for Educator Licensure | Information for Families | Translated Materials | Cleaning and Disinfecting on School Grounds | Travel Guidance | Excused and Unexcused Absences

School Closure Guidance

On March 26, 2020, Governor Scott directed school districts to make preparations for a transition to Continuity of Learning for the remainder of the school year. He further ordered the Agency of Education to continue its consultation with the Department of Health to advise as this response develops regarding school openings for some or all end of year activities.

Continuity of Learning (COL) means districts will be required to provide education services and related supports to all of their students remotely so that student learning and academic progress is achieved as if schools had remained open. Districts are required to make the transition to COL on or before Monday, April 13, 2020. Please consult Guidance on the Governor's Directive to Prepare for Transition to Continuity of Learning(3/27).

On the evening of March 24, 2020, Governor Scott issued Addendum 6 to his Executive Order which puts in place a 'Stay Home, Stay Safe' order and directs all non-essential businesses and non-profits to cease in-person operations. Please consult Guidance on Governor Scott's Stay Home, Stay Safe Order (3/25) for guidance for schools on student meals, childcare for essential persons and continuity of learning based on the Governor's order.

On March 15, 2020 Governor Scott issued a directive to all Vermont schools to conduct an orderly dismissal of all schools, and cancellation of all school related activities, no later than Wednesday, March 18, 2020. Read the press release.

Back to Top

Special Education Guidance

Please consult:

Back to Top

Guidance for School Nutrition Operations

Please consult:

Refer to COVID-19 Guidance: Limiting Cafeterias to 250 People (3/15) for help complying with Executive Order 01-20.

Back to Top

Child Care for Essential Persons Information

Please consult:

Requesting Child Care

Families with persons working in a field included on the Essential Persons List for COVID-19 Response (3/18) should complete this webform, which collects information to connect the families of essential workers with child care in schools and licensed child care programs that are operating to provide services now through April 6, 2020, while school dismissal and general child care service closures are in effect. Families can also call 2-1-1 ext. 6.

Back to Top

Financial Guidance

Please consult Agency of Education COVID-19-Related Financial Guidance.

Back to Top

School Closure Guidance for Other Programs

Please consult

Back to Top

Guidance for Maintenance of Learning

Please note that these documents provide guidance for the period of school closure prior to April 13, 2020, as schools are preparing their Continuity of Learning plans and transitioning to remote learning. This guidance will be supplemented and, in some cases, superseded by pending guidance on Continuity of Learning.

Back to Top

Continuity of Learning Plan Template

Please use the Continuity of Learning Plan Template to develop and submit Continuity of Learning Plans (CLP) under Governor Scott's Directive Number 5 of March 26, 2020. Initial CLPs should be sent to [email protected] by the end of the day on Wednesday, April 8, 2020.

Back to Top

Guidance for Educator Licensure

Back to Top

Information for Families

As you communicate with your communities about COVID-19, we continue to recommend that you emphasize common disease prevention measures as the best way to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Many of the precautions that help prevent other respiratory diseases, like colds and the flu, can also help keep an illness like COVID-19 from spreading. This poster from the CDC contains the most important points:

  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with your sleeve or a tissue. Throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

Back to Top

Translated Materials

The Department of Health has a general information document Tips to Help Keep Illness from Spreading in the following languages:
Arabic | Burmese | Chinese | English | French | Kirundi | Nepali | Somali | Spanish | Swahili | Vietnamese

The CDC has provided materials specific to COVID-19 in English, Spanish and Simplified Chinese:

CDC Guidance for School and Childcare Administrators in Spanish

CDC Information on Symptoms in Simplified Chinese

CDC Information on Symptoms and Treatment in Simplified Chinese

Preventing COVID-19 from Spreading to Homes and Communities in Simplified Chinese

CDC Travel Health Alert Notice in Simplified Chinese

Back to Top

Cleaning and Disinfecting on School Grounds

The Vermont Department of Health is asking schools to follow general preventative guidance from the CDC to help keep COVID-19 from spreading: Stay home if you are sick, use and reinforce routine cough and handwashing hygiene measures.

In addition, using third-party certified cleaning products, frequently clean areas that experience high traffic for both students and staff. Disinfect areas and frequently touched surfaces such as bathrooms, nurse's offices, cafeterias, drinking fountains and door handles. Make sure that school custodial staff are trained in the proper use and handling of disinfectants. School custodial staff should be the ones using disinfectants, not teachers or students.

Back to Top

Travel Guidance

Please consult the Vermont Department of Health for updated travel guidance.

Back to Top

Excused and Unexcused Absences

In an executive order dated March 13, 2020, Governor Phil Scott ordered that 'no school superintendent or school board shall cause a student or parent to be penalized for student absences that are the result of following medical advice or the guidance of VDH or arising from the concerns of parents or guardians relating to COVID19.' Read the executive order.

Back to Top