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Searching 2023-2024 Session

The Vermont Statutes Online

The Vermont Statutes Online have been updated to include the actions of the 2023 session of the General Assembly.

NOTE: The Vermont Statutes Online is an unofficial copy of the Vermont Statutes Annotated that is provided as a convenience.

Title 16: Education

Chapter 007: Supervisory Unions

  • Subchapter 001: Generally
  • § 261. Organization and adjustment of supervisory unions

    (a) The State Board shall review on its own initiative or when requested as per subsection (b) of this section and may regroup the supervisory unions of the State or create new supervisory unions in such manner as to afford increased efficiency or greater convenience and economy and to facilitate prekindergarten through grade 12 curriculum planning and coordination as changed conditions may seem to require.

    (b)(1) Any school district that has so voted at its annual school district meeting, if said meeting has been properly warned regarding such a vote, may request that the State Board adjust the existing boundaries of the supervisory union of which it is a member district.

    (2) Any group of school districts that have so voted at their respective annual school district meeting, regardless of whether the districts are members of the same supervisory union, may request that the State Board adjust existing supervisory union boundaries and move one or more nonrequesting districts to a different supervisory union if such adjustment would assist the requesting districts to realign their governance structures into a unified union school district pursuant to chapter 11 of this title.

    (3) The State Board shall act on a request made pursuant to this subsection within 75 days of receipt of the request and may regroup the school districts in the area so as to ensure reasonable supervision of all of these public schools.

    (c) The State Board may designate any school district, including a unified union district, as a supervisory district if it will provide for the education of all resident students in prekindergarten through grade 12 and is large enough to support the planning and administrative functions of a supervisory union.

    (d) Upon application by a supervisory union board, the State Board may waive any requirements of chapter 5 or 7 of this title with respect to the supervisory union board structure, board composition, or board meetings, or the staffing pattern of the supervisory union, if it can be demonstrated that such a waiver will result in efficient and effective operations of the supervisory union; will not result in any disproportionate representation; and is otherwise in the public interest. (Amended 1987, No. 228 (Adj. Sess.), § 3; 1991, No. 181 (Adj. Sess.), § 3; 2015, No. 46, § 41, eff. June 2, 2015; 2017, No. 49, § 14, eff. May 23, 2017; 2019, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 57.)

  • § 261a. Duties of supervisory union board

    (a) Duties. The board of each supervisory union shall:

    (1) Establish a supervisory union-wide curriculum, by either developing the curriculum or assisting the member districts to develop it jointly, and ensure implementation of the curriculum. The curriculum shall meet the requirements adopted by the State Board under subdivision 165(a)(3)(B) of this title.

    (2) Assist each school in the supervisory union to follow the curriculum as adopted under the requirements of the State Board pursuant to subdivision 165(a)(3)(B) of this title.

    (3) If students residing in the supervisory union receive their education outside the supervisory union, periodically review the compatibility of the supervisory union’s curriculum with those other schools.

    (4) In accordance with criteria established by the State Board, establish and implement a plan for receiving and disbursing federal and State funds distributed by the Agency of Education, including funds awarded under P.L. 89-10, the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 as amended.

    (5) Provide professional development programs or arrange for the provision of them, or both, for teachers, administrators, and staff within the supervisory union, which may include programs offered solely to one school or other component of the entire supervisory union to meet the specific needs or interests of that component; a supervisory union has the discretion to provide financial assistance outside the negotiated agreements for teachers’ professional development activities.

    (6) Provide special education services on behalf of its member districts and, except as provided in section 43 of this title, compensatory and remedial services, and provide or coordinate the provision of other educational services as directed by the State Board or local boards; provided, however, if a supervisory union determines that services would be provided more efficiently and effectively in whole or in part at the district level, then it may ask the Secretary to grant it a waiver from this provision.

    (7) Employ a person or persons qualified to provide financial and student data management services for the supervisory union and the member districts.

    (8) Provide the following services for the benefit of member districts in a manner that promotes the efficient use of financial and human resources, which shall be provided pursuant to joint agreements under section 267 of this title whenever feasible; provided, however, if a supervisory union determines that services would be provided more efficiently and effectively in another manner, then it may ask the Secretary to grant it a waiver from this subdivision:

    (A) manage a system to procure and distribute goods and operational services;

    (B) manage construction projects;

    (C) provide financial and student data management services, including grant writing and fundraising as requested;

    (D) negotiate with teachers and administrators, pursuant to chapter 57 of this title, and with other school personnel, pursuant to 21 V.S.A. chapter 22, at the supervisory union level, provided that:

    (i) contract terms may vary by district; and

    (ii) contracts may include terms facilitating arrangements between or among districts to share the services of teachers, administrators, and other school personnel;

    (E) provide transportation or arrange for the provision of transportation, or both, in any districts in which it is offered within the supervisory union;

    (F) provide human resources management support; and

    (G) provide other appropriate services according to joint agreements pursuant to section 267 of this title.

    (9) [Repealed.]

    (10) Submit to the board of each member school district, on or before January 15 of each year, a summary report of financial operations of the supervisory union for the preceding school year, an estimate of its financial operations for the current school year, and a preliminary budget for the supervisory union for the ensuing school year. This requirement shall not apply to a supervisory district. For each school year, the report shall show the actual or estimated amount expended by the supervisory union for special education-related services, including:

    (A) a breakdown of that figure showing the amount paid by each school district within the supervisory union; and

    (B) a summary of the services provided by the supervisory union’s use of the expended funds;

    (11) On or before June 30 of each year, adopt a budget for the ensuing school year.

    (12) Adopt supervisory union-wide truancy policies consistent with the model protocols developed by the Secretary.

    (13)-(17) [Repealed.]

    (b) Virtual merger. In order to promote the efficient use of financial and human resources, and whenever legally permissible, supervisory unions are encouraged to reach agreements with other supervisory unions jointly to provide any service or perform any duty under this section pursuant to section 267 of this title. Agreements between supervisory unions are not subject to the waiver requirement of subdivision (a)(8) of this section. Agreements shall include a cost-benefit analysis outlining the projected financial savings or enhanced outcomes, or both, that the parties expect to realize through shared services or programs.

    (c) Noncompliance; tax rate increase. After notice to the boards of a supervisory union and its member districts, the opportunity for a period of remediation, and the opportunity for a hearing, if the Secretary determines that a supervisory union or any one of its member districts is failing to comply with any provision of subsection (a) of this section, then the Secretary shall notify the board of the supervisory union and the board of each of its member districts that the education property tax rates for nonhomestead and homestead property shall be increased by five percent in each district within the supervisory union and the household income percentage shall be adjusted accordingly in the next fiscal year for which tax rates will be calculated. The districts’ actual tax rates shall be increased by five percent, and the household income percentage adjusted, in each subsequent fiscal year until the fiscal year following the one in which the Secretary determines that the supervisory union and its districts are in compliance. If the Secretary determines that the failure to comply with the provisions of subsection (a) of this section is solely the result of the actions of the board of one member district, then the tax increase in this subsection (c) shall apply only to the tax rates for that district. Subject to V.R.C.P. 75, the Secretary’s determination shall be final. (Added 1987, No. 228 (Adj. Sess.), § 5; amended 1989, No. 202 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 1989, No. 230 (Adj. Sess.), § 25; 1991, No. 181 (Adj. Sess.), §§ 4, 5; 1995, No. 185 (Adj. Sess.), § 83, eff. Jan. 1, 1998; 2001, No. 8, § 3; 2003, No. 36, § 2; 2003, No. 114 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; 2009, No. 44, §§ 2, 47, eff. May 21, 2009; 2009, No. 153 (Adj. Sess.), § 9, eff. June 3, 2010; 2011, No. 129 (Adj. Sess.), § 2, eff. May 11, 2012; 2011, No. 129 (Adj. Sess.), § 18, eff. July 1, 2013; 2013, No. 92 (Adj. Sess.), § 39, eff. Feb. 14, 2014; 2015, No. 46, § 39, eff. July 1, 2016; 2019, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 58.)

  • § 262. Meetings; election of officers

    (a) Within 30 days from the date a supervisory union is established by the State Board, the Secretary shall call a meeting of the school directors of the school districts in the supervisory union. The number of directors shall be determined and directors shall be elected according to section 266 of this title. Within 30 days thereafter, the Secretary shall call a meeting, and the board shall elect a chair and other necessary officers to serve until the first regular annual election of officers.

    (b) Regular annual elections of officers shall take place not later than 30 days after the latest annual school district election held by a member district in the supervisory union.

    (c) The directors of the supervisory union board shall serve for a one-year term. Vacancies on the supervisory union board shall be filled by appointment by the school board of the school district that was represented by the vacating board member. The person so selected shall serve for the duration of the term vacated.

    (d) Each supervisory union board shall establish policies and procedures designed to avoid the appearance of board member conflict of interest. (Amended 1969, No. 298 (Adj. Sess.), § 77; 1989, No. 188 (Adj. Sess.), § 5; 1991, No. 181 (Adj. Sess.), § 6; 2013, No. 92 (Adj. Sess.), § 40, eff. Feb. 14, 2014.)

  • § 263. Quorum

    A majority of the school districts comprising a supervisory union shall be represented at a supervisory union meeting and a majority of all members of the supervisory union board shall be present in order to constitute a quorum for the transaction of business. A legal vote taken at such meeting shall be binding upon each school district in the supervisory union. (Amended 1991, No. 181 (Adj. Sess.), § 7.)

  • § 264. Majority vote of school directors

    (a) Elections and the transaction of all other business at such supervisory union meeting shall be determined by majority vote of all school directors present.

    (b) A supervisory union may establish an executive committee consisting of the chair and no fewer than two additional directors. The supervisory union shall enumerate in writing the specific powers and duties delegated to the executive committee, which shall have authority to act on behalf of the supervisory union within its delegated powers. (Amended 1983, No. 119 (Adj. Sess.), § 1; 1991 (Adj. Sess.), § 8.)

  • § 265. Repealed. 1983, No. 119 (Adj. Sess.), § 2.

  • § 266. School board having more than three members

    For the purpose of holding meetings and transacting the business of a supervisory union, the school board of any district assigned to a supervisory union, and having more than three members, shall elect from such board three members who shall represent and act for it in meetings of the supervisory union to which it is assigned. But the school board of any district that employs no teacher shall have only one vote in said supervisory union meeting.

  • § 267. Joint agreements among supervisory unions

    (a) Supervisory unions, or administrative units not within a supervisory union, in order to provide services cooperatively, may at any annual or special meeting of the supervisory unions, by a majority vote of the directors present and eligible to vote, enter into a joint agreement to provide joint programs, services, facilities, and professional and other staff that are necessary to carry out the desired programs and services.

    (b) The supervisory union may provide any authorized or required services by contract with any person, partnership, corporation, or school district within or outside the supervisory union or with other supervisory unions. The supervisory union may also provide such services to any independent school in the supervisory union area on such terms as the supervisory union board deems proper. Contracts shall be approved by the board and signed by the chair or the chair’s designee. A contract may be for a term not to exceed four years renewable for successive four-year periods.

    (c) The expense of carrying on these shared programs, services, and facilities shall be allocated according to a plan mutually agreed upon by the participating supervisory unions and the Secretary of Education, including agreement on revision and adequate auditing procedures to allocate costs.

    (d) Facilities constructed to house such shared programs and services when constructed with funds from the State School Building Aid Bond Account and attached to an existing building become a part of a new construction program. The school district within which the special facilities are located shall own the facilities subject to the mutual agreement on reversion.

    (e) A central treasury may be established among the participating unions. Such central treasury will receive and disburse funds of participating supervisory unions. Funds shall be disbursed only on orders signed by at least one authorized member from each of the participating supervisory unions. The participating supervisory unions may jointly own personal property under their contract. (Added 1967, No. 70; amended 1969, No. 298 (Adj. Sess.), § 78; 1991, No. 24, § 11; 2013, No. 92 (Adj. Sess.), § 41, eff. Feb. 14, 2014; 2021, No. 20, § 56.)

  • Subchapter 002: Supervisory Union Expenses
  • § 301. Apportionment of expenses

    Unless otherwise agreed upon, each school district shall pay a proportionate share of the salary and expenses of the superintendent and the expenses of the supervisory union based on the number of enrolled students in each member school district. “Enrolled students” shall be defined by the State Board by rule, including the treatment of tuition students, special education students, students enrolled in career technical centers, and other particular circumstances. (Amended 1961, No. 123; 1987, No. 228 (Adj. Sess.), § 17, eff. July 1, 1989; 1991, No. 181 (Adj. Sess.), § 11; 1991, No. 204 (Adj. Sess.), § 7; 2013, No. 92 (Adj. Sess.), § 43, eff. Feb. 14, 2014.)

  • § 302. Repealed. 1975, No. 48, § 14, eff. April 15, 1975.

  • § 303. Repealed. 1991, No. 181 (Adj. Sess.), § 12.

  • § 304. Repealed. 1975, No. 48, § 14, eff. April 15, 1975.

  • Subchapter 003: Supervisory Union Treasury; Treasurer; Audits
  • § 321. Treasury; uses

    A supervisory union shall have a treasury for the purpose of transacting the financial affairs of the supervisory union and any joint operations among or within supervisory unions authorized under section 267 of this title. (Added 1966, No. 59 (Sp. Sess.), § 1(a); amended 1987, No. 228 (Adj. Sess.), § 9.)

  • § 322. Treasurer; salary; expenses; duties

    (a) A supervisory union board shall elect a supervisory union treasurer at least annually, fix the salary and expenses, and determine the amount of a bond for him or her.

    (b) Nothing shall preclude a supervisory union treasurer from also being a treasurer or deputy treasurer for any school district within the supervisory union if so voted by the electors for the school treasurer. Before beginning duty, a deputy treasurer shall give a bond with corporate surety conditioned for the faithful performance of duties in the same amount and for the benefit of the same obligee as the bond required of the school treasurer.

    (c) It shall be the duty of the supervisory union treasurer to sign all checks and drafts, and invest in a prudent manner all funds in the supervisory union treasury as directed by the supervisory union board. Upon request by the supervisory union board, the supervisory union treasurer shall prepare a balance sheet. The supervisory union treasurer shall reconcile monthly accounts with the supervisory union bookkeeper. (Added 1966, No. 59 (Sp. Sess.), § 1(b); amended 1967, No. 155, § 1, eff. April 15, 1967; 1987, No. 228 (Adj. Sess.), § 10; 2003, No. 107 (Adj. Sess.), § 3.)

  • § 323. Audit by public accountant

    Annually, the supervisory union board shall employ one or more public accountants to audit the financial statements of the supervisory union and its member districts. The audits shall be conducted in accordance with generally accepted government auditing standards, including the issuance of a report of internal controls over financial reporting to be provided to recipients of the financial statements. Any annual report of the supervisory union to member districts shall include notice that the audits have been performed and the time and place where the full report of the public accountant will be available for inspection and for copying at cost. (Added 1966, No. 59 (Sp. Sess.), § 1(c); amended 1987, No. 15, § 2; 2009, No. 44, § 3, eff. May 21, 2009; 2011, No. 129 (Adj. Sess.), § 19, eff. July 1, 2013.)

  • § 324. Term of office; vacancy

    The term of office of a supervisory union treasurer shall be for one year from July 1 through June 30. If the office becomes vacant, the voting members of the supervisory union board shall elect a new supervisory union treasurer to take office on election for the unexpired term. (Added 1966, No. 59 (Sp. Sess.), § 1(d); amended 2013, No. 92 (Adj. Sess.), § 45, eff. Feb. 14, 2014.)

  • § 325. Removal from office

    A supervisory union treasurer may be removed from office for cause by a majority vote of the members of the supervisory union board present and eligible to vote at a meeting called for that purpose. (Added 1966, No. 59 (Sp. Sess.), § 1(e); amended 2013, No. 92 (Adj. Sess.), § 46, eff. Feb. 14, 2014.)