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Challenges for Change school budget reduction targets $23.2 million

first_imgThe Vermont Department of Education mailed FY2012 individualized education spending reduction targets Monday to each supervisory union, supervisory district, and the three technical center districts across the state, as required by Act 146 of the 2010 Legislative session. Overall the recommendations are for a 2.34 percent reduction across the state in education spending in order to meet the goal of saving $23.2 million dollars. District-level recommendations range from a 0.5 percent reduction to a 2.68 percent reduction.The determinations were made at the district levels, but aggregated to the supervisory union level as the law requires. The determinations considered factors outlined in the law, such as per pupil spending, student-to-staff ratios and demonstrated fiscal restraint. The department examined data from the past four budget cycles on· total education spending,· spending per equalized pupil,· student enrollment to direct instruction staff,· direct instruction staff to administrative staff,· and student enrollment to administrative staff. ‘We expect most school districts and supervisory unions to take these recommendations seriously,’ said Commissioner Vilaseca. ‘And they will do their best to meet them, just as they responsibly reduced spending last year. This is new territory, both for our department and for local school districts.’The boards of each supervisory union and district shall notify the commissioner on or before December 15, 2010 whether their combined budgets will meet the recommended reductions. By January 15, 2011, the commissioner shall report to the legislative education committees the total projected amount of FY2012 budgets, with a detailed proposal by which the Legislature can ensure the targets will be met.See Page 76, sections E1 and E2, for this specific requirement at http://www.leg.state.vt.us/DOCS/2010/ACTS/ACT146.PDF(link is external). A complete explanation of the formula begins on the following page.Challenges for Change School Budget Reduction Targets Calculations Brief overview of methodologyFor any given data element, the percent change between any two consecutive years was calculated (i.e., the percent change in netted education spending from FY2010 to FY2011). Percent changes were capped at plus or minus 50 percent to compensate for very large percentage changes resulting from small changes in very small districts. Additionally, some data were either clearly entered incorrectly or not entered at all, resulting in very large or low percentage changes.The four years of data resulted in three percentage changes. Those three changes were averaged for a district. Again, to accommodate small districts, the averages were capped at plus or minus one standard deviation from the mean. As supervisory unions are different from school districts and perform different functions, a separate mean and standard deviation was calculated and used for supervisory unions and supervisory districts. School districts and the three technical center school districts used a mean and a standard deviation based on their combined data.The resulting average (capped if necessary) was divided by the relevant group mean to normalize the data. This figure became the weight for any given factor. The exception was the factor for direct instruction FTEs per administration and support staff FTEs. That factor had a low mean for the school district and technical center (0.15%), resulting in disproportionately large weights for a modest average (e.g., with a mean of 0.15%, an average of 10% results in a weight of 67). Therefore, the DI per Admin & Support weight was decreased by a factor of 0.50 to mitigate the effect of the small mean.Weights from the various factors were aggregated. To account for the varying magnitudes of education spending (Burlington versus Eden, for example), the total weights for a district were multiplied by the ratio of the district’s netted education spending to the netted education spending as a whole.Some districts had a negative total weight, resulting in a negative factor after applying the relative netted education spending factor. Statistically, it is valid to add a constant to transform the negative values to positive. This was done by adding a constant of 1 to all weighted totals. This result was then multiplied against the ratio of the required $23,200,000 reduction versus the netted education spending total (2.348%), to give a weighted percentage for reduction.That weighted percentage was multiplied by the netted education spending for all districts, SUs, SDs, and technical center districts. The aggregated targets for the State exceeded the $23,200,000, so a reduction factor of the legislated target divided by the calculated target state total was applied to each district, bringing the targets to the $23,200,000 figure.Source: Vermont DOE. 8.4.2010http://education.vermont.gov/new/html/dept/press_releases.html(link is external)center_img OverviewSection E2 of Act 146 of the 2010 Legislative session specifies that FY2012 education spending will be reduced by $23,200,000 from the FY2011 level, while achieving the outcomes for education listed in section E1. The commissioner of education is directed to develop reduction targets for each supervisory union and technical center school district.These targets were developed by looking at the member districts of supervisory unions, the supervisory unions themselves, and the three technical center school districts. Additionally, supervisory costs for Supervisory Districts were removed from the school costs (e.g., supervisory costs for the Montpelier Supervisory District were removed from the Montpelier School District costs).Entities excludedSchool districts excluded from these targets were districts that:did not operate a school and tuitioned all grades;belonged to a union school and tuitioned all other grades;were members of two unions offering combined grades K ‘ 12;were members of joint school agreements as individuals but data were aggregated to the joint school level and were included; andunorganized towns and gores.Data elementsData used were the most recent available for the following elements and are as reported by the districts:education spending (FY08-FY11);equalized pupils as calculated with the maximum allowable 3.5% loss (FY08-FY11);enrollments (FY07-FY10); andteacher / staff data (FY07-FY10)direct instruction ‘ all licensed teachers in the classroom;administrative and support staff ‘ central office staff personnel for both school and general administration, including paid teachers aides.Education spending for school districts was decreased by supervisory union assessments, costs for grades tuitioned, capital debt, and costs for technical center students.Factors usedThe above data elements were used in the following six factors:netted education spending (after removal of aforementioned costs);netted education spending per equalized pupil;enrollment per direct instruction staff FTEs;enrollment per administration and support staff FTEs;direct instruction FTEs per administration and support staff FTEs; andnetted education spending as a percent of total netted education spending, applied to the aggregated weights from 10 – 14.last_img read more

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Judge Milton honored for his work with children

first_img Judge Milton honored for his work with children Associate EditorWhen a lawyer or judge does something special for children, Chief Justice Harry Lee Anstead likes to send a thank-you note.And so it was, when long-time juvenile judge, the now retired W.A. “Bill” Milton of Grand Island, received the R. David Thomas Child Advocate of the Year Award.“Hopefully, by your example, other leaders and communities throughout Florida will recognize the importance of caring for all of our children,” Justice Anstead wrote to Judge Milton.“Surely, if there is a silver bullet for our social ills, it rests in the care of our children.”Caring for children comes naturally to Judge Milton, the father of three daughters and grandfather of four, the past president of the Florida Council of Juvenile Court Judges, the founder and charter member of the Lake County Boys Ranch and the Leesburg Boys Club, now the Boys and Girls Club.Judge Milton began his two dozen years on the bench in 1961, when he became county and juvenile judge of Lake County and ended up handling 8,633 children’s cases.As longtime friend Bill Mills said: “He was a progressive and innovative judge. He was unlike any other in Florida. Things that are being adopted today are the same things he was doing in the 1960s.”Besides handling a heavy caseload as a juvenile division judge, Milton also supervised the operation of the Juvenile Detention Center for Lake County. He helped turn it from a bare-bones operation into an innovative program that was only one of two centers in Florida that had a teacher assigned by the school board so that detained children could continue their schooling.Of 17 juvenile centers in the state in the mid ’60s, Lake County was one of only two counties that had a contractual working relationship with the school board to define truancy and develop written guidelines for detaining and helping turn around chronically truant children.Judge Milton also saw to it that a full-time mental health professional was assigned to the juvenile court staff. And he also instituted the first defensive driving school for juvenile offenders in Lake County.“During my years on the bench, I learned early on that the only chance we had to reduce our crime rate was to practice early intervention with ‘at risk’ children,” Judge Milton said. “I also believed that the only way our courts could be effective was to recruit the good people of the community as volunteers. Lake County was recognized many times for its volunteer programs for youth during my years on the bench.”As a 42-year member and past president of the Kiwanis Club, Judge Milton volunteered his time to the World’s Greatest Baby Shower, Clothes for School Kids, Backpacks for School Kids, and Books for Children.The Children’s Home Society of Florida not only nominated Judge Milton for the award created by Dave Thomas, the founder of Wendy’s, but a second honor by the Lake County Citizen’s Commission for Children.When Judge Milton sums up his many years working to help children, he said: “I felt it was the most important work that a judge could be involved in.”That attitude is what prompted Chief Justice Anstead to express in his letter: “Thank you for caring for our children.” December 15, 2002 Jan Pudlow Associate Editor Regular News Judge Milton honored for his work with childrenlast_img read more

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How the Istra Inspirit story “Casanova Tour” exceeded all my expectations

first_imgHow to start the story of Istra Inspirit, one of the world’s best tourist stories, confirmed and U, than with one story.A book is a book, a brochure is a brochure, an information board is a board, and no matter how many written words describe an event, it can become a real and striking experience only if we experience it live. On the other hand, we all know the power of stories, which accompany us from a young age to youth, work, and eventually we ourselves become storytellers when we become parents and tell the same stories to our children. The power of the story has always followed and will always follow the human race. Why? Because stories evoke strong emotions and experiences in us, and thus are strongly positioned. Pure biology.That is why the world of marketing has long accepted the storytelling concept in promotion, and for a long time big brands do not sell products but emotions, experiences and products are identified with human characteristics. So Nike doesn’t sell sneakers, Harley Davidson doesn’t sell motorcycles, while Coca-Cola doesn’t sell drinks.And tourism is the best of all – stories, emotions and experiences. Here’s a “trick” question: What do you remember from your last vacation? Accommodation or some special moments with the family? The answer is surely some experience, moment, emotion, not a hotel or accommodation. It was the power of the story that took me to Vrsar, the love destination of Giacomo Casanova, an adventurer and the world’s most famous seducer, who in 1743 stayed in Vrsar for a year. But this information, no matter how interesting, would not have any value without interpretation and would certainly not be remembered for long.And this is where storytelling and Istra Inspirit come into play, a multi-award winning experience tourism project that enriches the cultural and tourist offer of the peninsula by reviving historical events in authentic locations, through staged Istrian legends and myths.Thus, Istra Inspirit actors introduced tourists to ancient times or time travel, through the authentic streets and locations of Vrsar when Casanova walked and stayed in Vrsar, all through a storytelling concept or an interactive costumed walk. ‘In addition to numerous cultural and entertainment events that are traditionally organized during the summer months, Vrsar will try to provide its guests with a unique experience of traveling into history this summer. In addition to the Old Samnja, which revives Vrsar in the time of the Vrsar County and which will have two editions this year, we also started the Casanova Tour. Like the previous Casanovafest, this new interactive tour has the character of Giacomo Casanova and the description of his stay in Vrsar from the famous Memoirs.”Said Natalija Vugrinec, director of the Tourist Board of Vrsar and added that this event is a continuation of the story at Casanovafest, which was organized over the past nine years, and which through lectures, plays, film screenings, exhibitions and concerts presented the theme of love and eroticism in various forms. art.In cooperation with Istra Inspirit, a new concept has been designed for this tourist season – a guided interactive tour in six terms, in order to enable as many guests as possible to get acquainted with the interesting rich history of our place. “For the next season, Casanova Tour is planned to be supplemented with a gastronomic experience, in accordance with the EU project “I enjoy tradition” in which TZO Vrsar is one of the partners, and whose theme is the preservation and tourist valorization of indigenous foods and dishes. We are sure that such an event will be extremely attractive to guests in our destination, but also that it will have a significant promotional effect.. ‘ Vugrinec emphasized.Casanova Tour is a great example of the promotion of a destination through cultural and historical heritage and its interpretation in the manner of storytelling through theatrical expression in performance. A performance that is at least more than impressive, in the manner of legendary and striking Hollywood actors, without any exaggeration. You know the feeling when a movie scene becomes legendary, that’s exactly what the performance was like. By the way, over 200 different artists, performers and actors are participating in the Istra Inspirit project under the artistic direction of director Petra B. Blašković.Thus, the professional actors of Istra Inspirit, as part of the ‘Casanova Tour’, took all visitors on an unforgettable journey to the time of the Vrsar County when the seducer and adventurer, Giacomo Casanova, stayed in Vrsar twice. The first time, as he states in his ‘Memoirs’, which served as a source for the script of this innovative tour, he visited Vrsar for three days in August 1743, still as a poor and infamous priest, while the second time he came to Vrsar as a soldier during a voyage from the Venetian island of Malamocco, when his ship anchored at night in the port of Vrsar. Giacomo Casanova, accompanied by the voice of the greatest lover in history, was returning to Vrsar, allegedly because of the beautiful women from Vrsar. Through entertaining and educational content, visitors were able to discover the more intimate side of Casanovina Vrsar, and all the interesting events that characterized his stay in Vrsar, and among other things, visited the lookout under the palm tree near the church of St. Anton, the lookout of Casanova, the main city gate, and Casanova’s refuge within the city walls, ie we met Vrsar in a different way and I am sure an unforgettable way. The cast that participates in the Casanova tour consists of Frano Novljan, Šandor Slacki, Luka Barešić, Sedina Cerovac and Ivona Bulešić, who with their striking and above all impressive interpretation met, laughed and intrigued everyone present, and through interaction drew the audience into the story. and the tourists themselves became part of the story.As I was familiar with the Istra inspirit story, I had high expectations and a clear idea of ​​what awaited me, but to be honest, my expectations were not only met, but were completely exceeded. I was delighted with the level of acting and how the actors immersed themselves in the roles. With the old town backdrop of Vrsar, the costumed actors and the striking interpretation of the story was more than credible, and I can say for sure that the visitors of the Casanova Tour felt as if they were really in that time and space. At times, we were brought back to reality by random passers-by who visually “interrupted” the sense of history and time travel.Surely he would never have known Vrsar so well, nor would he have remained in such a strong memory that I walked the streets of the city alone. That is why the storytelling concept is so important in tourism, because it is precisely about strong emotions and experience.But, as I mentioned at the beginning of this story, the word is the word, and no matter how powerful the words may be and trigger an avalanche of reactions, you can only understand the true experience and value of this story if you experience it. That is why Istra Inspirit interpretations should be one of the compulsory subjects for all tourism students.In any case, if you want to find out what a storytelling concept is, I definitely recommend that you experience one of the 13 Istra Inspirit stories, whether you are from the world of tourism or marketing. Ultimately, as is usually the case in Lijepa naša, everything that is ours is wrong, or if you think I have gone too far with the use of superlatives in the description, I challenge you to see for yourself.last_img read more

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Chelsea’s Hudson-Odoi arrested and bailed: Reports

first_imgTopics : Chelsea and England winger Callum Hudson-Odoi was arrested at the weekend after police responded to a report of an “unwell woman”, British media reported on Monday.Police officers and an ambulance attended Hudson-Odoi’s London home in the early hours of Sunday.The 19-year-old was arrested and taken into custody before being released and bailed. “Police and London ambulance service were called at 03:53hrs on Sunday, 17 May to a report of an unwell woman,” a police spokesman said, adding that the woman was taken to hospital.The reports said Hudson-Odoi was in breach of coronavirus lockdown guidelines.Chelsea have declined to comment, according to the reports.Hudson-Odoi made a full recovery after becoming the first Premier League player to test positive for COVID-19 in March.last_img read more

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Swiss watchdog laments ‘rudimentary’ data on pension fund risks

first_imgVera Kupper Staub – former chief executive of the Pensionskasse for Zurich and now vice-president of Switzerland’s top supervisor, the Oberaufsichtskommission (OAK) – told delegates at the 2014 Swiss Pension Conference (SPC) that pension funds’ investment risks remained “the most difficult to assess”.She said the data on investment risk collected for the OAK’s annual report was “too rudimentary”, with only a “rough breakdown” of the portfolio into equities, bonds, real estate, alternatives, liquidity and unhedged FX-exposure.“But, based on this, it is difficult to really assess the investment risk of a pension fund,” she said.She confirmed that supervisors, pension fund representatives and experts were now discussing new parameters for assessing the risk of pension fund investments, adding that the debate was still “completely open”. Kupper Staub stressed that the OAK was not aiming for a Swiss solvency test for pension funds along the lines of what the Finma, the supervisor for insurers, has put in place for its institutions.For her, the OAK’s main challenges are to “establish a risk dialogue with pension funds”, advance the risk assessment and “establish an understanding that mistakes do happen”.In a personal statement unrelated to her position at the OAK, she noted that the government’s proposal to cap investment in alternatives – as part of the Altersvorsorge 2020 reform – according to a maximum fee level for each pension fund “might not be a good idea”.She pointed out that this would be “a major infringement” on the autonomy of pension fund boards.She added that, under the current system, with trustee boards comprising representatives from both social partners as well as experts, “we have to leave the responsibility for the investment strategy with them”.Kupper Staub noted there was an alternative recommendation by the government to prohibit investments in “opaque” alternative investments, “which is something I can understand”.She also argued that trends towards the individualisation of choices for members within the second pillar were “not in line with the system” or the purposes for which it was created.She said this related particularly to a proposal brought forward by an MP to create tax incentives for pension funds to allow people with higher incomes to take on responsibility to choose their own asset allocation.To date, only a handful of Swiss pension funds have introduced these so-called 1e-plans.Kupper Staub said most people had been shown to make “irrational” choices when it came to long-term savings.“I am not sure whether all these tendencies towards individualisation are really helping the idea behind a Pensionskassen system as a whole,” she said.last_img read more

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Ivan White

first_imgThose surviving who will cherish Ivan’s memory include his daughters, Becky (Gene) Stewart, and Robin White, both of Brookville; grandchildren, Lisa (Mike) McCullough, Matt (Kelly) Stewart, Ashley (Isiah) Dozier, Kristin (Alex) Smith, and 11 great grandchildren.  Besides his parents, he was preceded in death by his brother, Bud White. Memorial donations may be directed to the Mustangers 4-H Horse and Pony Club or the Operation Endowment in care of Franklin County Community Foundation.  To sign the online guestbook or to leave a personal condolence, please visit www.cookrosenberger.com.  The staff of Cook Rosenberger Funeral Home is honored to care for the family of Ivan White. Friends may visit with the family on Thursday, July 21, 2016 from 9 a.m. until time of service at 11 a.m. at Cook Rosenberger Funeral Home, 929 Main Street, Brookville.  Burial will follow in Maple Grove Cemetery.center_img Ivan White of Brookville, was born on November 25, 1920 in Blooming Grove, Indiana, the son of Russell and Hazel Geiling White.  He married June Miller on December 12, 1942 and she preceded him in death on July 19, 2008.  Ivan was a retired businessman and partner with his brother, Stanley “Bud” White in White Livestock.  He was a former member of the Board of Directors at McCullough Hyde Hospital and People’s Trust Company where he also served as chairman.  Ivan retired young and was able to enjoy many activities with his grandchildren and great grandchildren.  On July 15, 2016, at the age of 95, he passed away at Brookville Healthcare.last_img read more

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Rio: It’s the right time to retire

first_imgFormer England captain Rio Ferdinand has brought his near 20-year playing career to an end following his recent release from QPR. Manchester United then paid £29.1million for his services in July 2002, a world-record fee for a defender, and it was at Old Trafford where he became regarded as one of the finest centre-halves in the world. Ferdinand, who formed an excellent partnership alongside Nemanja Vidic for many years at United, believes that would not have been possible without the help of Sir Alex Ferguson. “Winning trophies over my 13 years at Manchester United allowed me to achieve everything that I desired in football. From a young child to today, that was all I cared about,” he said. “None of that would have been possible, without the genius of one man, Sir Alex Ferguson. His greatest accomplishment in my eyes will always be how he developed us as men, not just as footballers. He will in my opinion, always be the greatest manager in British football history.” There were low moments too. He was given an eight-month suspension at club and international level from January 2004 for missing a drugs test, meaning he missed the rest of the season and that year’s European Championship. He did play in the 2002 and 2006 World Cups but an injury ruled out an appearance in South Africa in 2010, a few months after he was named captain of the side. He announced his international retirement in May 2013 having endured an acrimonious previous 12 months that included being left out of the Euro 2012 squad, leading to rumours of an ill-tempered relationship with John Terry, who at the time was awaiting trial for racially abusing Ferdinand’s brother Rio. After making over 300 appearances with the Red Devils, he linked up with Harry Redknapp again last summer, but it was not be a fitting farewell as QPR were relegated from the top-flight. Saturday’s announcement prompted several former Manchester United and England team-mates to pay tribute. Paul Scholes said: “He was a great player, without a doubt the best centre-half I ever played with.” Michael Owen concurred, saying: “What a player he was, absolute Rolls Royce.” Gary Neville also added his praise on Twitter, saying: “Congratulations to @rioferdy5 on his great career. Best I played with and best pairings I’ve seen with Vida/JT. Covered me very well too!” Jonny Evans, who played alongside Ferdinand on many occasions at Old Trafford, told Press Association Sport: “He was the modern day centre-back that everyone looked to. Training every day and playing with him, he was someone I tried to replicate in my own game. “I had the opportunity to play alongside Rio for a lot of years and he was someone who had the ability to make the game seem so easy. “Anyone who’s played with him would tell you that. “He transmitted that to the rest of the team and he was a great character in the dressing room. “More than anything he was a winner and a leader. His trophy record reflects that” The 36-year-old, who played 81 times for England, was quietly released along with several other players on Wednesday by the recently relegated Rangers and he has decided against finding another club. In a statement, he said: “After 18 years as a professional footballer, I now feel it’s the right time for me to retire from the game that I love. “As a 12-year-old boy, kicking around a football on the Friary Estate in Peckham, I never dreamt that I would play for my boyhood club West Ham, captain Leeds United, win the Champions League with Manchester United, or re-join my first manager Harry Redknapp at Queens Park Rangers. “I will always regard the 81 times that I played for England, with immense pride. These are all treasured memories that will last a lifetime. “I’d like to thank and pay tribute to my wife Rebecca and my family, including my mother and father, for their sacrifices, their encouragement and their advice throughout my career. “And finally, I’d like to thank all the fans from all the clubs – for without them professional football would not exist. I will miss each and every one of you on my Saturday afternoons.” Ferdinand made over 100 appearances for the Hammers in four years, while he was also given his England bow at the age of 19 while still at Upton Park. He built his reputation as a lithe defender capable of starting attacks from the backline, which convinced Leeds to splash out a then British record £18million in November 2000 on the Londoner, who went on to captain the side in the 2001/02 season. Ferdinand made his senior debut as a 17-year-old in May 1996 with West Ham before going on to complete big money moves to Leeds and Manchester United, with whom he won six Premier League titles and the FA Cup and Champions League once. He switched to QPR last year after failing to win a new deal at Old Trafford, but the central defender struggled to hold down a regular first-team place and was absent for the closing stages of the season after his wife Rebecca Ellison died following a battle with cancer on May 1. 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