School Choice FAQs

What is School Choice?

Frequently Asked Questions


What is School Choice?

Most commonly, school choice occurs in small Vermont towns that do not have the population to support a middle school or a high school of their own.  In school choice towns, families can choose from any public or approved independent school in Vermont.

What are the benefits of School Choice?

Families can choose the school that best meets the needs of their student: educational, emotional and social. This means that students can have a higher chance of success at their chosen school.

How does it work? What schools can I choose for my student?

 Parents may choose from public or approved independent schools in Vermont. 

How do I choose which school would be the best fit for my student?

 The process is easy.

  • First, identify a few schools your student might be interested in attending. You can ask friends and family from other towns about their school Come up with a short list of schools you might be interested in learning more about.
  • Second, visit the schools. Your student should spend a full day at schools that you might be interested in, taking classes and learning about how the school works. As parents, we would encourage you to visit the school as well. Take a tour, ask questions and find out more.
  • Third, talk with your students about what they saw on their visit day(s). Combine their impressions with what you have learned about the school. As a parent, your perspective and voice is an important part of deciding which school will best suit your student.

How many Vermont Towns have school choice?

According to the School Choice VT website, about 90 Vermont towns have school choice for at least one grade. These towns include several of Chelsea’s neighbors, like Tunbridge, Strafford, and Sharon.

For a map of Vermont that shows school choice towns, please click here: School Choice Map 

How long has Vermont had School Choice?

School choice has been part of the VT educational landscape for about 140 years.


If I need help figuring out this process, who can I call?

Members of the school boards in many school choice towns (for instance, Hartland, Sharon, Stockbridge, and Tunbridge) have lots of experience with school choice as do the community members in those towns. Reach out and ask questions. Please also feel free to call Amber Wylie, the Director of Enrollment at The Sharon Academy. She will be happy to answer questions in an impartial manner. Amber grew up in the school choice town of Sharon, and has worked in enrollment for many years at The Sharon Academy. Amber can help with many questions about this.