by Guy Page
The Vermont Department of Health will provide Vermont schools with students’ Covid-19 vaccination information, as part of the in-school testing program, state officials said at Tuesday’s press conference.
The in-school testing program is touted as the best way to ensure in-person learning during the pandemic. School districts statewide face a shortage of skilled workers to conduct testing, and state officials conceded Tuesday most of the work may need to be done bynon-healthcate providers under school nurse supervision.
That night, at the October 5 Essex Westford School District board meeting, Essex parents learned their permission isn’t required for that exchange of information. The following report was received from a concerned parent who attended the meeting.
“EWSD will start the ‘Test to Stay’ program, in which unvaccinated close contacts will have to be tested in order to stay in school. Additionally, EWSD no longer needs parental permission to see if your child is vaccinated or not. EWSD has full access to vaccination status whether or not parents and guardians give permission.”
The school board also has given school board chair Kim Gleason 48 hours to respond to their recommendation she resign, because she no longer lives in Essex, the concerned parent/reporter stated. Gleason also sits on the State Board of Education, a position that would be unaffected by her resignation.
“Most members of the board expressed that Kim Gleason’s position on the board but lack of Essex residence puts the legitimacy of the board in question.
“Jack Behlendorf succinctly told Gleason that the right thing for Gleason to do is resign. Liz Cady expressed frustration at Gleason’s lack of transparency with the board by listing her house in early June but not informing any of the board of this fact until it was brought to the Board’s attention, by a community member, that her house sold on August 31. Cady further stated that Gleason’s admittance that she would not seek reelection in 2022, does not have any school-aged children, sold her home in Essex and is currently residing in her Grand Isle home shows that “intent” is lacking.”
“Gleason has been given 48 hours by the board to respond to the majority of the board’s recommendation to resign.”