Vermont Edition
1:51 pm
Thu July 24, 2014

The Ultimate Selfie, On Toast

Four years ago, Jesus was all the rage. Now it’s selfies. We’re talking toasters, of course, that burn these images into your morning slice of bread. They’re the products of St. Johnsbury company called Vermont Novelty Toaster Corporation, and CEO and President Galen Dively talked with Vermont Edition about what it takes to get your face imprinted on... toast.

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Vermont Edition
1:42 pm
Thu July 24, 2014

Oldest Serving Canine Cop Retires

Chris Morrell and his dog Buck retired from police work in June.
Jane Lindholm VPR

Chris Morrell is the oldest serving police canine handler in the country, and in June he and his German Shepherd Buck retired from police work. Morrell's career spanned more than 40 years, working most recently with the Shelburne Police Department, and before that the Hinesburg Community Police Department.

Morrell and Buck visited the VPR studios, where Morrell described his work with police K9s over his career.

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Vermont Edition
1:24 pm
Thu July 24, 2014

Making Kids Count

Vermont is ranked second in the country in childhood well being.
yaruta Thinkstock

Vermont ranks second in the country in child well being. That’s according to the most-recent Kids Count Data Book, which is published annually by the Annie E. Casey Foundation. The state is among the top 10 in all four of the ranked categories – economic well-being, education, health, and family and community.

Voices for Vermont’s Children Research Associate Sarah Teel and Marianne Miller, Head Start and Early Head Start director for Capstone Community Action Council, discuss the report’s findings and look at areas of well-being that still have children’s advocates concerned.

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Vermont Edition
12:00 pm
Thu July 24, 2014

Alvarez To Receive National Medal Of Arts

In this Jan. 24, 2006 file photo, writer Julia Alvarez poses for a photo on her farm, Altagracia, in Jarabacoa, Dominican Republic.
Ramon Espinosa AP File

Writer and Vermont resident Julia Alvarez captured critical acclaim with her novels How the García Girls Lost Their Accents and In the Time of the Butterflies. Now, she’s about to receive the National Medal of Arts in a White House ceremony on Monday. Alvarez joins us to discuss her work.

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Arts & Culture
7:43 am
Thu July 24, 2014

Katharine Britton On Bookstock, Getting Published, And The Writer-Reader Connection

Upper Valley fiction author Katharine Britton is one of 30 local writers taking part in Bookstock this week.
Courtesy

Book lovers of all stripes will be gathering in Woodstock this weekend for the sixth annual Bookstock festival.

The literary event brings together people for author readings, workshops and to browse many used and vintage books for sale.

The headliners at this year’s conference are Billy Collins, Anita Diamant and Charles Simic.

But there are also many local poets, fiction and non-fiction authors giving readings at the festival.

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Environment
6:48 am
Thu July 24, 2014

Deerfield Wind Project Opponents Have Their Day In Court

An effort to stop construction of a 30 megawatt ridge-line wind development in the Green Mountain National Forest got a hearing Wednesday in Federal Court in Brattleboro. The 15-turbine Deerfield Wind project has been authorized by the U.S. Forest Service and permitted by the state. But opponents say the Forest Service approval process was flawed. And they argue that the installation would compromise a federally designated wilderness area near the site.

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VPR News
6:03 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

DCF Head Tells Legislators Child Safety Is Top Priority

A special legislative committee met in Montpelier Wednesday to hear from a number of key players on child safety issues.

State police officials, local police chiefs and prosecutors were all represented at today’s hearings, which were spurred by two toddler deaths earlier this year that resulted from abuse. Dave Yacovone is the Commissioner of the Department for Children and Families. He says that despite recent problems, today’s hearings show the state’s commitment to child safety.

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VPR News
5:49 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

In Campaign Launch, GOP's Milne Hits Shumlin's 'Radical Agenda'

Republican gubernatorial hopeful Scott Milne launched his campaign kickoff at the Aldrich Public Library in Barre on Wednesday.
Angela Evancie VPR

Pomfret businessman Scott Milne has formally entered the race to win the Republican nomination for governor.

Milne says his moderate approach on issues will be in sharp contrast to what he calls "the radical agenda" of incumbent Gov. Peter Shumlin.  

On Wednesday, about 100 people crowded into the community room of the Aldrich Public Library in Barre to be part of Milne’s campaign kickoff. The group included many Republican lawmakers from central Vermont, as well as Lt. Gov. Phil Scott, and former governor Jim Douglas.

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VPR News
5:47 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

Lawmakers Angered By Continuing Problems At Health Exchange

Lawrence Miller, director of state health reform, faced tough questions Wednesday from legislators.
Steve Zind VPR

Here’s how one critic of Vermont Health Connect describes the experience of many of the customers who bought their insurance through it:  

“It’s occupying people’s whole days. It’s invading their sleep. It’s keeping people up at night. It’s causing a tremendous amount of stress for a lot of folks.”

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Vermont Edition
12:00 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

English Language Learners In Vermont Schools

With as many as 60 different languages spoken in some Vermont schools, educators are having to adapt to teach English language learners.
Fengyuan Change Thinkstock

If you had to take a standardized test right now, how do you think you would score? Now imagine that test is in a language you can barely read. Since the English language dominates our educational system, a gap in English language ability is often equated with a gap in intelligence.

We talk to Shawna Shapiro, assistant Professor of Writing & Linguistics at Middlebury College, and Susan Blethen, an ELL teacher at Burlington High School, about the challenges facing English language learners and what some educators are doing to bridge the gap.

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