By Mary Powell, Chair
The dog days of summer have arrived. Days that are perfect for enjoying Vermont’s mountains, lakes and rivers. Days that are perfect for lazing around and not thinking about much, days that are perfect for… summer vacation.
Speaking of summer vacation, that is what roughly 86,000 Vermont kids are doing right now – vacationing until the school doors open at the end of August. Vermont makes a huge investment in our children. We invest approximately 1.67 billion in the public school system, we invest significant sums in human services programs to support our kids and a strong network of non profits that provide important programs and services for Vermont youth. All total, we invest billions in a very small state.
Investing in our economic future is directly tied to investing in our children. Improving outcomes and ensuring that Vermont children have access to high quality early care and education has been a priority of the Vermont Business Roundtable for well over a decade. We have made some progress but there is a lot we still can, and need, to do. As the summer winds down, we will need to summon our courage, summon our intellect and get ready to dig deeper on how to take a bigger step forward in improving outcomes in our education system in a way that is sustainable and cost effective.
The Vermont Business Roundtable will be hosting an Appreciative Inquiry Summit this fall to delve into the brutal facts of our system and develop thinking on how we can dramatically improve outcomes given the very significant investment we are making. So, over the summer, between business and pleasure, I hope you find even a little time to reflect on this challenge, think about the persistent obstacles and create new ways to overcome them and I look forward to seeing you in the fall at the Appreciative Inquiry Summit.
Wishing you all the best,