BONDVILLE - Due to The Mountain School's unique founding 15 years ago (public school closed, independent school created), along with their dramatic increase in enrollment from 36 to 85 students, a tuition increase of just 4.4 percent from the 1997-1998 school year to the present and going from one of the lowest-performing schools in Vermont to one of the highest, MSW has drawn lots of attention.

MSW's Head of School, Daren Houck, was recently invited to speak at an event in Burlington hosted by the Ethan Allen Institute regarding independent education, the advantages of school choice, and the current political and educational climate in Vermont.

Houck joined a contingency from North Bennington, where voters last March opted, by a two to one margin, to close their public school and open an independent town academy in its place, as Winhall did 15 years ago. As a follow-up to this presentation, Houck was invited to be on Rob Roper's live radio show, True North, on station WDEV out of Woodbury.

"Education is - and should be - a hot topic," said Houck. "The world is changing, and the world of education must change. MSW is and will continue to be a leader in what schools of the future can be. We were founded on the principles of excellence and equity in a fiscally responsible manner, and have fulfilled those promises for 15 years. I am proud of what MSW has accomplished."

For information on the school or its programs, call Daren Houck at 802- 297-2662.