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Central Vermont Adult Basic Education, Inc.

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Sydney LeaCongratulations to CVABE Board member, Sydney Lea, on being named Vermont's new Poet Laureate!


The Vermont Arts Council is pleased to announce that Governor Peter Shumlin has appointed Sydney Lea of Newbury, VT as Vermont’s next Poet Laureate.   A public ceremony honoring Mr. Lea will be held on November 4 at the Capital Plaza Hotel in Montpelier. The ceremony will be attended by Governor Shumlin as part of an evening celebrating the arts in Vermont.


Sydney Lea lives in Newbury, Vermont, and has been a Vermont resident since the early 1990s.  He has worked with CVABE as a volunteer tutor in Orange County and, for many years, as an officer of the organization's Board of Directors


Lea has received fellowships from the Rockefeller, Fulbright, and Guggenheim Foundations, and has taught at Dartmouth, Yale, Wesleyan, Vermont and Middlebury Colleges as well as at Franklin College in Switzerland and the National Hungarian University in Budapest. Lea has also been very active for the past quarter century in land conservation and the promotion of literacy.  (


The Advisory Committee found Sydney Lea’s poetry to be virtuosic in texture and form, yet likely to be engaging to a diversity of readers and listeners because of the work’s dramatic intensity, narrative momentum, and musicality, and because of this poet’s extraordinarily evocative descriptions of northern New England’s landscapes, animal and plant life, and the seasonal panorama. Through all of his books, Lea has paid particular attention to the stories of generations living alongside one another in north-country villages, including the interactions of “old-timers” and relative newcomers. He continues the tradition of Vermont poets who are both singular — one of a kind — and broadly accessible.


For more information about Sydney and the honor of being named Vermont’s Poet Laureate, please go to the website of the Vermont Arts Council.

Don Belmont

Don joined us in 2010 and is currently helping a student prepare for the written drivers test. Don is a Master Carpenter, a history buff, and has a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics Education. He loves teaching and says, "I enjoy the moment when someone 'gets it' and they are so fulfilled."

Don with student

Jessie and student

Jessie Graham


Jessie joined us in the fall of 2009 with a desire to support adult literacy. She is a Speech and Language Pathologist with a Masters Degree in Education. Besides providing one-on-one tutoring in reading, Jessie has also been leading training workshops for staff and other volunteers.


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