The Vermont Reads Institute at the University of Vermont (VRI at UVM) has been providing professional development in Vermont for over 15 years. VRI was conceived by Mark Hull, then Vermont Commissioner of Education, whose passion and knowledge fueled educational innovations that endure to this day. He worked closely with Sue Biggam, a dedicated educator with a career devoted to literacy, to develop an organization that provides the highest quality professional development in literacy.
In its first years, VRI was housed at Vermont Institutes and was directed by Pat Halloran. At that time, we coordinated the Reading Excellence Act grant, and subsequently the Vermont Reading First Grant. In 2004, the Vermont Institutes was restructured and Dr. Marge Lipson, Professor of Education at UVM incorporated VRI into the College of Education and Social Services, where it has lived ever since. It continues to grow and is directed by Mary Grace.
Today, after 15 years of serving hundreds of educators, dozens of schools, and hosting national and international researchers and authors, VRI’s work continues to honor Mark’s legacy, Sue’s expertise, and Marge’s strategic vision for comprehensive literacy improvement.
The VRI Difference:
- We visit your school and present a literacy-focused workshop
- We run study groups
- We develop/refine school assessment systems
- We help facilitate data teams
- We develop reading and writing units of study
- We mentor literacy coaches and/or specialists
- Develop a common framework for balanced literacy instruction
- We offer site based & short-term support