Adult Education - April 10, 2024

The Senate Education Committee reviewed adult education on Wednesday afternoon. Testifying first was Senator Westman who brought Representative Mihaly with him. Chairman Campion noted that the discussion before the Committee deals with the 60/40 split for adult education between the Education Fund and General Fund for adult education programs. Westman noted that going back before last year and over a period of some time there has been a large and targeted shift from the Education Fund to the General Fund, but he argued that regardless of age they are all students trying to get their high school degree. Last year a summer study was put together to review this issue and to make recommendations which they did this legislative session.

Mihaly noted that a third of the students in adult education programs are teenagers, a third are individuals in their 20s and another third are older. The GED program costs $3,500 per student. The summer study committee recommended to discontinue the formalities of age and allow funding to come out of the Education Fund.

The Feds have a test that they use to review the GED program. The Vermont Agency of Education (AOE) decided to use this test as a graduation test and chose to require a higher score than the Feds were using. This resulted in lower graduation rates.  The summer study committee recommended that the test be used up entrance to determine where the student was at and what specific support the new students required. 

Mihaly and others he worked with came up with a formula where they multiply the base student funding by 0.26 and then again by the number of students in adult education programs. For FY2025, this yields $6.3M out of the Education Fund.

The AOE just filed some objections to the proposal this week, which Mihaly found frustrating. He argued that they had known for several months about this proposal and said nothing. Senator Gulick noted that they need to be careful what they do and expect from the Education Fund because every dollar of spending means a higher property tax for Vermonters.

Campion agreed that more testimony is required before the Committee can determine what they want to do with this recommendation.

Showing 1 reaction

Please check your e-mail for a link to activate your account.

Donate Volunteer Reduce Property Tax Burden


get updates