Welcome Back Sign

August 2021

Dear Parents and Guardians,

As the new Principal at the Neshobe Elementary School, it is my pleasure to welcome back new and returning students and their families for the 2021 - 2022 School Year. I hope you are all enjoying the remainder of the summer break and that you had an opportunity to relax, recharge and get ready to start the new school year. Your positive energy and commitment to the education of your child(ren) is key to a successful school year!  I look forward to working with you throughout the year.

This summer we hosted over 75 students in the Neshobe Summer Learning Program. Those that attended experienced making puppets, cooking, outdoor adventures, learning about habitats, the ocean, etc.  Overall, a great time was had by all. I am looking forward to having all students back in the building on September 1st and I look forward to getting to know each of them. 

The faculty and staff have been working throughout the summer to plan and prepare for the start of the new school year as well.  Materials and supplies have been arriving on what seems like a daily basis and the classrooms are in the process of being cleaned and set up.  Our custodial staff has done an outstanding job getting the building ready for faculty, staff and students.  All  have worked so hard to create a safe and welcoming environment where the long history of caring and kindness will continue!

New Faculty and Staff:

We have some new faculty and staff joining the Neshobe Team this year and I want to make a few introductions. Please join me in welcoming the following:

  • Michele Daignault, Pre-K teacher for 3 year-olds

  • Holly Seigle, Kindergarten teacher

  • Susan Price, Special Educator

  • William Chapman-Hale, Academic Interventionist and District ELL (English Language Learners)

  • Craig Davignault, Academic Interventionist

  • Amanda Bliven, Intervention Specialist (new role)

  • Brittany Plano, Music, Long-term Substitute

  • Taylor Masterson, Rutland Mental Health

  • Dan Raabe, Assistant Principal

I am also excited to be starting at Neshobe!  Both Dan and I have spent much of the summer here and had the opportunity to meet many of the staff and students who will fill the classrooms and halls this fall.  I look forward to the many days of learning ahead and the chance to meet all the families as we enter a new school year.

A Little About Me:

I hold a Doctorate in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, a Master’s degree in Educational Leadership and a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education. I have over 30 years of experience in education. Over those years, I have held a variety of roles in the education field including classroom teacher, special educator, paraprofessional, special education consultant, and director of student services. I have viewed education through multiple lenses and perspectives and I carry these experiences with me into my new role as principal. 

Here are a few of the attitudes, perspectives and beliefs that I feel are the premise of a strong educational system:

  • Each and every student belongs and is a valued member of the school community.

  • Each and every student has a right to high quality first instruction and core curriculum.

  • All students have untapped potential: always assume competence.

  • The responsibility for each and every student is shared by ALL.

  • High academic and behavioral expectations are clear and upheld for all students.

My focus over many years has been the development of strong systems and the foundations on which to build those systems. This requires the ability to move between a macro and micro view of the system without losing sight of the larger vision and the fact we are here to serve students. A strong system relies on the capacity of the individuals within the system.  I have no question that the individuals at Neshobe will work together to strengthen our systems for the benefit of all students.

I also strongly believe that families and the school must work together to support the education of students.  We recognize that in order to be successful in school, our children need support from both the home and the school. We know a strong partnership with you will make a great difference in your child’s education. This takes strong commitment, a willingness to work together and to communicate on a regular basis. As partners, we share the responsibility for our students' success.  

A Little About Dan:

I am very excited to be joining the Neshobe Elementary School staff.  As someone raised in Charlotte, Vermont I understand the importance of community and look forward to learning more about this community.

I have been in education since 1997; working as a teacher, coaching and educating coaches.  From 1997 to 2015 I taught economics at the high school level.  At that school I was also the main organizer for the ultimate frisbee program, which consisted of 5 teams, one of which I also coached.  From 2015-2019 I worked as the Manager for Youth and Education at USA Ultimate, the national governing body that oversaw ultimate competition in the United States.  In all three of these jobs my focus was helping all students gain a better sense of empathy and to become better decision makers.

Meet and Greets:

Dan and I will find a few times throughout the year for virtual meet and greets. The Meet and Greets are designed to place names with faces, get to know each other and ask general questions.  We will also look for occasions to gather outside without the need for masks.  

We look forward to the start of a terrific school year and the many exciting educational opportunities ahead for our students.


Vicki Wells, Ed.D.