Dedication Page




“The task of Leadership is not to put greatness into people, but to elicit it.”

~John Buchanan


Sandy Basset has graced the halls of Vergennes Elementary School since 1999.  During his tenure as principal at VUES, the faculty, staff and students have enjoyed over a decade of outstanding leadership and the privilege of working in a positive, effective school environment.  Sanford Basset approaches his retirement at the end of this school year. How can one spotlight such a man as Sandy Bassett?


In the wake of NECAP tests, RTI, PBIS, schools facing identified status, and the rising expectations in standards based instruction and curriculum, Sandy has diligently and genuinely taken effective leadership in his school.  Learning expectations are more rigorous, and the children are academically more successful than ever before.  Community, staff, and students have benefited from this leadership, and Sandy has inspired full and genuine investment from teachers to move things forward in the way that he has designed. The teachers believe in him, his vision, his approach, and his efficacy.  He has elicited from his staff a cooperative, positive, and hard working ethos.  Sandy has received two awards as testimony to his leadership.  First, the Vermont Council of Special Education awarded him the Golden Apple Award for Administrators for his work as an advocate for handicapped children.  Offering a supportive environment and equal access to education for all students has been his passion.  Second, on two occasions he has received the Principal’s Service Award:  first in recognition of twenty years of service, and again at the advent of his retirement.


Most memorable and fundamental is Sandy’s humane and loving approach to the children.  He shows abiding faith, he offers the great and respectful gift of high expectations, and he has a good heart to back these up.  The children feel supported, honored, and loved by Mr. Basset, and they want to do right by him.  Similarly, the staff at Vergennes Elementary has felt supported, respected and appreciated.  Frequently and at random, the staff has received notes of commendation or verbal appreciation; he often makes deliberate efforts to recognize his teachers for their commitment, genuine investment, and care.  In this way, he has continued to inspire his staff to do more, as he says, “for the good of the order.”   Because of Sandy’s leadership, Vergennes Elementary School has enjoyed over ten years of educational success, and a positive, productive working environment.


It is especially difficult to say goodbye to such a loved leader.  As he moves on to other pursuits, he will be dearly missed.  We wish him well, and thank him for his valued contribution to our school and community.