Purpose of Practice

Educate persons selling alcohol and tobacco products and persons serving alcohol regarding their legal responsibilities regarding the product. (Updated 2012)

Description of Practice

Students are instructed by a Liquor Control Educator on criminal and civil liabilities regarding alcohol. Specific topics include Dram Shop liability, serving or selling to minors, recognizing intoxication, intervention techniques, fake identification cards, and general regulations. Students are tested for comprehension on laws upon entry (pre-test) and are again tested at the end of the instruction to gauge retention and comprehension (post-test). These classes are offered in various locations around the state at no cost to the student. Certification is good for two years, though some businesses and communities require more frequent training.

Success or Improvements

Liquor Control Educators annually train approximately 8,000 sellers and servers in the state. Certified training is a statutory requirement in Vermont. This method has consistently proved to be the most successful method of instilling responsibility and demonstrating good techniques. The success of this training program can be shown that even though the students may satisfy their statutory requirements for training by taking the class online or by training by their owner or manager, the numbers have remained high for those attending the in-person classes. Due to the high frequency and availabilitiy of the seminars, coupled with the lack of costs associated with the classes, they remain a very popular choice for alcohol training.

Evaluation of the Practice

A longitudinal study was conducted using compliance check data. The study encompassed nearly a decade of checks involving every license holder in the State. Those trained at the in-person seminars had a 91.5% compliance rate versus 70.3% for those not trained. The success of the classes can also be gauged by our wealth of data collected during the pre and post tests. In 2011, the pre-test scores averaged 80.8%, with post-test scores being 97.8%.


Our headquarters has received numerous positive responses from attendees complimenting the educators on their delivery, depth of information presented, and wealth of knowledge on the subject shared with those students.


Name: Kathy O'Hara, Personnel Administrator 
Agency: Vermont Department of Liquor Control 
Address: 13 Green Mountain Drive, Drawer 20, Montpelier, VT 05602 
Tele: 802-828-4934 
Email: kathy.ohara@state.vt.us