Licensure Notes/Updates-Updated January 4, 2021
NEW LEGISLATION ALLOWS FOR PROVISIONAL LICENSE ASSESSMENT WAIVER
Allows school divisions to submit a request to issue a renewable license to individuals who have not completed the professional assessments and who meet the following criteria:
1- holds provisional license that will expire in three to six months; 2-is employed by a school board; 3- is recommended by the school division superintendent-no exception; 4- has attempted unsuccessfully to obtain a qualifying
score on the professional assessments prescribed by the Board; 5- has received an evaluation rating of proficient or above on the performance standards for each year of the provisional license and such evaluation
was conducted in a manner consistent with the Guidelines for the Performance Standards and Evaluation Criteria for Teachers; 6-meets all other requirements for initial licensure.
This becomes another tool the school division may possibly use in the hopefully unusal case that a provisionally licensed teacher cannot pass the assessments. Be advised that the guidelines in this bill
must be rigidly followed for the teacher to receive this waiver. Also, the effective date of implementation for this bill is July 1, 2019. This is significant because anyone whose license expires on June 30, 2019,
would not be able to use this legislation as the request must be submitted for eligible individuals whose provisional license is within three months of expiring. At the same time, remember that school division superintendents
still have the option of requesting an extension of a provisional license for one or two years.
The bill also removes the requirement that the Board of Education prescribe an assessment of basic skills for individuals seeking entry into an approved education preparation program and establish a minimum passing score for such assessment. Information on the implementation of this legislation will be sent out by the DOE at a later date
NEW TESTING OUT OPTION ADDED
The DOE will now allow school divisions to hire individuals who hold as a minimum, a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited college/university
to test out to meet the content course requirements regardless of their years of work experience. This option is NOT available for those seeking the PK-3 or PK-6 endorsements or
other endorsements for which Virginia does not have an approved Praxis II. Nor is this option available for those not hired by a school division.
Additionally, individuals employed by school divisions with provisional licenses who were
cited for content course work and have now passed the Praxis II, can now have the school division submit was request to waive completion of those content courses
and base it on the passing Praxis II scores. The exception cannot be granted for those seeking the PK-3, PK-6 and reading specialist endorsement.
NEW COMPUTER SCIENCE PRAXIS II AND UPDATED SLLA APPROVED
The Board of Education approved the Advisory Board on Teacher Education and Licensure's recommendations to: (1) use the Praxis Computer Science (5652) test as a professional teacher's assessment for the Computer Science endorsement;
(2) set a passing score of 142 for the test; and (3) implement the assessment requirement on September 1, 2018, with the exception of individuals applying for a license with an endorsement in Computer Science through Virginia
approved programs who would become subject to the requirement effective January 1, 2020.
The Board of Education also approved the Advisory Board on Teacher Education and Licensure's recommendations to: (1) use the School Leader Licensure Assessment (6990) as a professional administrator's assessment for
the Administration and Supervision PreK-12 endorsement; (2) set a passing score of 146 for the test; and (3) allow the acceptance of passing scores for either the current SLLA (6011) or the revised SLLA (6990) for
the period of September 1, 2018 to January 1, 2020; and effective January 1, 2020, require a passing score for the Praxis School Leader Licensure Assessment (6990) or a passing score on the SLLA (6011) if taken prior to
January 1, 2020.
2018 LEGISLATIVE ACTIONS AFFECT MANY ASPECTS OF LICENSURE
Several changes were passed by the 2018 General Assembly this past session that will impact licensure across the Commonwealth. Normally these bills go into effect on July 1st of the year
the laws are passed. Implementing instructions in a few areas are noted below. Information regarding the removal of funding for licensure automation was also announced:
1-Eliminate TSIP: The Supts. Memo at the link provides details ending TSIP as a requirement
for initial licensure as well as renewal.
2-Extensions of Provisional Licenses: The DOE sent an email to all school divisions with the form and instructions needed to request an extension based on the following legislation:
The Board shall extend for at least one additional year, but for no more than two additional years, the three-year provisional license of a teacher upon receiving from the division superintendent
(i) a recommendation for such extension and (ii) satisfactory performance evaluations for such teacher for each year of the original three-year provisional license.
did add instructions to "please NOT send copies of performance evaluations to this office. The superintendent will certify by signature that the teacher had satisfactory performance evaluations for each
of the original three-year provisional license." This option should be particularly helpful to those holding Special Education Provisional licenses who generally have 24-27 semester hours of course work to complete over
a three year period while working full time. Not an easy task!
3-Licensure Renewal: Starting July 1, 2018, the validity period of a renewable license will increase from 5 to 10 years. This change may lead to an increase in fees to cover lost revenue. 360 points will be needed to renew a 10 year license.
4-CPR/Child Abuse/Dyslexia Training: Allows individuals seeking their initial license to complete these requirements during the first year of their provisional license.(I would add that if you apply on your own, i.e.,
not through a school division, the DOE will require that these actions be completed for initial licensure.)
5-STILL PENDING NEEDING FURTHER REVIEW: DUAL lANGUAGE PK-6 ENDORSEMENT Implementing instructions for the following legislative actions will need further review before implementation.
At the Septenmber 23, 2019 ABTEL meeting a presentation by A Dual Language endorsement workgroup provided a report. Action to implement the recommendations must go throuh the NOIRA process. Details will
likely be provided in the next 6-12 months.
HB 1156-English Language Learners:
HB 1156 creates an endorsement for dual language instruction PK-6. The bill defines dual language instruction as instruction in English and in a second language.
The endorsement program adds course work that includes the study of dual language programs, bilingual literacy development, methods of second language acquisition, theories of 2d language acquisition;
instructional strategies for classroom management for the elementary classroom; content based curriculum, instruction and assessment. The bill provides that each teacher with this endorsement
would not be subject to taking the VCLA; And no teacher with this endorsement is required to get an additional endorsement in PK-3 or PK-6 in order to teach in PK thru 6th grade.
One Year High School Renewable License for Professors: Eligibility for a one-year license has been approved and will be extended to an individual who has received a graduate degree from a regionally accredited Institution of Higher Education (IHE);
completed at least 30 credit hours of teaching instruction at a regionally accredited IHE; received qualifying scores in both the VCLA and Praxis II content area assessment and completed the ancillary requirements
of CPR and child abuse training.
Implementation Date: July 1, 2017:
Requirement: Initial Licensure and License Renewal: Board of Education regulations governing teacher licensure to require every person seeking
initial licensure or renewal of a license to complete awareness training, provided by the Department of Education, on the indicators of dyslexia
and the evidence-based interventions and accommodations for dyslexia.(Board of Education Licensure Regulations for School Personnel were amended January 25, 2017, to comport with this law.)
NEW DYSLEXIA TRAINING MODULE POSTED
A Dyslexia Training Module is available to meet the
requirement of awareness training on the indicators of dyslexia and the evidence-based interventions. This module is accessible from PCs and
Mac computers. Viewing on an iPad or smartphone requires the download of the free ?mobile player.? Users should complete the module in one session
and have access to a printer.
Implementation Date: July 1, 2017:
Requirement: Initial Licensure and License Renewal (School Counselor Endorsements): Every person seeking initial licensure or renewal of a license with an endorsement as a school counselor shall complete training in the recognition of mental health disorder and behavioral distress, including depression, trauma, violence, youth suicide, and substance abuse.
Training: Refer to the Attachment for training options.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Dr. Kendra A. Crump, Director of Licensure and School Leadership,
by email at Kendra.Crump@doe.virginia.gov or by phone at (804) 371-2471.
NEW SCHOOL COUNSELOR TRAINING OPTIONS POSTED
Training Options for Individuals Seeking Initial Licensure or Renewal of a License with an Endorsement as a School Counselor
ALGEBRA I ADD-ON PRAXIS II APPROVED AND IMPLEMENTED
At long last, Final Review and approval of the new Algebra I add-on Praxis II assessment, Test Code 5162 and passing score of 148 was made at the February 23, 2017 State Board of Education meeting.
The Algebra I test is an option to add the Mathematics Algebra I (add-on) endorsement to a teaching license.
This test cannot be used as an assessment for initial licensure; the test may only be used to add the Mathematics Algebra I (add-on) endorsement for individuals who hold an active (1) Collegiate Professional
or Postgraduate Professional License or (2) Provisional License leading to a Collegiate Professional or Postgraduate Professional License if the testing requirement for the initial endorsement has been met.
Test registration and test windows are available at the Educational Testing Service (ETS) web site, www.ets.org.
TWO HOUSE BILLS OFFER NEW LICENSURE OPPORTUNITIES
These two bills were discussed in more detail at September's ABTEL meeting. Additional details on both bills are noted here.
HB 261: This recently passed legislation
will add an alternate route for former members of the Armed Forces and Virginia National Guard who serve and receive
honorable discharges. As presented by Patty Pitts during the ABTEL meeting, the bill will do three things.
First it will establish a Provisional Veteran License; second it will allow honorably discharged veterans to apply directly to the DOE for a license without
going through a school division and if eligible receive a statement of eligibility; and finally it will allow honorably discharged service members
the opportunity to test out no matter how many years of service they have. This bill as currently described by Patty, makes no other changes in
licensure requirements for these service members.
HB 279: This Bill will establish a Career and Technical Education
(three-year) license. This is a nonrenewable license issued for a three year validity period to teach High School career and technical education courses
for those hired to teach for no more than 50 percent of the instructional day. The extract of how the regulations will be changed for this particular license
is at the link above. One of the interesting notes included in the bill is that this license will be the only license that can be extended for an
additional 3 year period.
These two HBs and the recommendations finalized at the ABTEL meeting, do have to go before the State Board first in October but
because these actions were required based on Legislative action, I doubt any changes will be or can be made to the content of the recommendations.
At its June 23, 2016 meeting, the Virginia Board of Education (BOE) approved in Final Review the recommendation made by ABTEL regarding the adoption of the ESL Praxis II Assessment, Test Code 5362.
It means that an ESL test will be available for individuals to take for the Career Switcher and Experiential
Learning Credits (ELC) programs as well as for licensed teachers wanting to test out to add the endorsement. The ESL Praxis II test WILL NOT be required for Virginia state-approved
program completers until September 1, 2017. Individuals who have completed out-of-state approved programs or those pursuing the endorsement
through the alternative transcript review route will be required to take the test for their initial Virginia license after July 1, 2016.
ESL ASSESSMENT APPROVED IN FINAL REVIEW BY BOE
Last Year, HB 758 established a new requirement for individuals seeking an initial Virginia teaching license after July 1, 2014 in a Career & Technical Education endorsement area.
The Bill required that new teachers had to earn an Industry Certification to be eligible to be hired. To that end, the Guidance Document
was posted in a Supts. Memo on June 6, 2014 and lists all certifications by endorsement that those pursuing CTE endorsements may select to meet this requirement. But this year's General Assembky has changed the rule a bit.
Under HB 2137, the law now allows the individual to be hired and issued a provisional license if the person meets the academic content requirements without having to hold an industry certification.
But then during the validity period of the provisional license,the teacher must earn the proper industry certification to be eligible for a five-year renwable license.
It is expected that the effective date of this change will be July 1, 2015.
NEW LAW CHANGES INDUSTRY CERTIFICATIONS REQUIREMENT FOR TEACHERS
HB 1320 adds language that states "no person seeking renewal of a license shall be required to satisfy any such requirement by
completing coursework and earning credit at an institution of higher education." With this change, individuals with a bachelor's degree seeking renewal will no
longer be required to take a three credit college course for renewal. Teachers will still have the option of taking a course for renewal but, again, it will no longer be a requirement to do so. The effective date
of this requirement is expected to be July 1, 2015. Implementing instructions were provided by the DOE in
LEGISLATIVE ACTION CAUSES RENEWAL REQUIREMENT CHANGE
Based on legislative action taken by this year's Virginia General Assembly through Senate Bill 1345, the civics renewal requirement put in place by the 2010 General Assembly and later removed through action taken by last year's
General Assembly, is now back in place. Those teachers required to take the training for renewal though has been changed.
All endorsements listed on Supts Memo #053-14 dated Februay 28, 2014 must complete the requirement for their first or next renewal cycle occuring after July 1, 2014. Please note that teachers holding PK-3 or PK-6 endorsements
(and who also do not hold any of those endorsements listed in Supts. Memo #53) are not required to complete this training.
TEACHING ENDORSEMENTS REQUIRED TO COMPLETE THE CIVICS RENEWAL REQUIREMENT
The most recent change came when one of our divisions requested that a school counselor who completed a state-approved program for the administration and supervision endorsement
was denied that opportunity until the person met the requirements of the Postgraduate Professional License which includes taking the VCLA and some additional professional studies courses. This has been a requirement
for school counselors, school psychologists and school social workers who want to add a teaching area. But this has not been the case in the past for those seeking the administration & supervision endorsement
as we found several examples over the past few years where school counselors who completed the adminsitration and supervision program were simply issued PGP licenses with the new endorsement.
Based on the information that we received in the last two weeks, a school division will either need to be sure individuals holding a PPS license meet the requirements to convert to a PGP license or they
will need to request a modification to see if they can receive a waiver from taking the VCLA and any additional professional studies courses like reading in the content area that are not included in the individual's education program.
LICENSURE CHANGES-PPS LICENSED TEACHERS & READING SPECIALISTS
In another area, although I already had been made aware of this next change a few months ago, it was again confirmed to me last month that reading specialists who do not have three years of experience in which the teaching of reading was
a major responsibility, will not be eligible to receive a provisional license for that endorsement. So any of your new to the teaching profession teachers who have this endorsement will not be able to hold the endorsement
unless they have the aformentioned experience.
Speech Language Pathologist(SLP) will no longer receive their school SLP license from the DOE. Rather, SLPs will be required to apply directly
to the Board of Audiology and SLP for a state license. Individuals with Board of Education licenses will be required to obtain the new license by
July 1, 2015. No applications for Board of Education SLP licenses will be accepted or processed after July 1, 2014. In addition, individuals with
multiple endorsements that include SLP on their current license, will not see the endorsement on their Board of Education license after the next renewal cycle as that endorsement will
SPEECH LANGUAGE PATHOLOGISTS NEW LICENSE
NEW REQUIREMENTS TO ADD A SPECIAL EDUCATION-ADAPTED CURRICULUM K-12 ENDORSEMENT TO A VIRGINIA LICENSE WITH AN ENDORSEMENT IN SPECIAL EDUCATION-GENERAL CURRICULUM
The Division of Teacher Education and Licensure has received inquiries regarding the requirements to be completed for a Virginia license
holder with an endorsement in Special Education General Curriculum K-12
[or Emotional Disturbances (ED), Specific Learning Disabilities (LD), or Intellectual Disabilities (ID)] endorsements) to add an endorsement in Special Education Adapted Curriculum K-12 to his/her license.
The Licensure Regulations for School Personnel set forth significant core competencies shared for both endorsements as well as requirements specific to either special education-general curriculum or special education-adapted curriculum.
In reviewing the competencies and requirements with experts in the area of special education, individuals must complete specific adaptive curriculum coursework to ensure the individual's preparation includes the necessary knowledge
development and skill training for practice as a teacher of students with disabilities (adapted curriculum).
A license holder with a Special Education General Curriculum K-12 endorsement (or ED, LD, or ID endorsements) who wants to add an endorsement in Special Education Adapted Curriculum K-12 will need to complete 12 semester hours
from a regionally accredited college or university distributed in the following areas and the appropriate supervised experience:
? Characteristics (6 semester hours): 1) characteristics of students whose cognitive impairments or adaptive skills require adaptations to the general curriculum (including, but not limited to, students with moderate to
severe intellectual disabilities or developmental delay; autism; multiple disabilities, traumatic brain injury; and sensory impairments as an additional disability to those referenced) and 2) positioning and handling.
? Individualized Education Program Implementation (6 semester hours): 1) teaching strategies and assessment with students with disabilities in an adapted curriculum; and 2) communication and severe disabilities.
Student teaching or one year of successful, full-time teaching experience with children with
disabilities (adapted curriculum) in a public school or accredited nonpublic school.
As you are aware, evaluations completed by this office are effective for three years; therefore, evaluations already completed are effective for three years from the date issued. However, effective January 1, 2014,
evaluations completed by this office for a license holder with an endorsement in Special Education General Curriculum K-12 (or ED, LD, or ID endorsements) seeking an endorsement in Special Education Adapted Curriculum K-12
to the license will require the completion of the requirements outlined above (12 semester hours of adapted curriculum coursework and experience). Please note that Transitioning coursework is the same coursework for both endorsements:
Special Education General Curriculum K-12 and Special Education Adapted Curriculum K-12.
Virginia is fortunate to have a consortium of colleges/universities that work to prepare individuals seeking the Special Education Adapted Curriculum K-12 endorsement. The Virginia Consortium for Teacher Preparation
in Severe Disabilities and Autism is comprised of five state approved teacher preparation programs in adapted curriculum, including: George Mason University, Norfolk State University, Radford University, University of Virginia,
and Virginia Commonwealth University. These institutions offer the coursework needed for an endorsement in Special Education Adapted Curriculum K-12.
Contact information for the institutions is available on the following Web Site.
NEW TESTS IN PLACE
The effective date for the newly approved Praxis II assessments for both middle and high shool English and math is now here. You are reminded that the Board of Education approved accepting the previously approved assessments for licensure from
individuals who took the assessment before January 1, 2014.
Also implemented on January 1, 2014 is the revised scoring of the VCLA. As I have noted previously, the test itself was not changed but the number of correct answers needed to achieve a passing score has been increased by
six in each area. Like the new Praxis II assessments, the DOE will accept the results from the VCLA if it was taken before January 1, 2014.
On July 1, 2014, the new elementary education Praxis II will be implemented. As has been mentioned previously, the new test will be broken down into four core assessment areas and the teachers will have to pass each core area.
There is no composite score for this assessment.
New Family & Consumer Science Praxis II: A multi-state standard setting session was conducted in September 2013 for the new F&CS Praxis II, Test Code 0122 or 5122. It is the first time that Virginia participated in a
multi-state standard-setting session and did not conduct its own standard setting session for this assessment. Twenty states were involved in this review with two teachers from Virginia participating.
One teacher was from Richmond and the other was from Appomattox. After a presentation by the ETS representative, Cathy Owens-Oliver, on all facets of the new test, ABTEL voted to present to the Board of Education
the passing score of 153 that was recommended by the multi-state panel. In addition, they recommended the new test be implemented on July 1, 2015.
RENEWAL FEE CHANGE
The DOE has decided to increase the fee for Division Superintendent's who renew both their Postgraduate Professional License and Division Superintendent License at the same time.
In the past, Superintendents only paid a fee of $25 when renewing both at the same time. Now they must pay $50, the normal fee for renewing two licenses.
CPR/AED/EMERGENCY FIRST AID(EFA) REQUIREMENT ADDED
The General Assembly passed legislation which now will require all teachers renewing their licenses after July 1, 2013 and all new teachers seeking initial licensure in Virginia after that date to complete
CPR/AED/EFA training. A list of Frequently Asked Questions can be found on the DOE web site that answer many questions regarding this requirement.
COMPOSITE TEST SCORES ELIMINATED FOR NEW PRAXIS I AND ELEMENTARY PRAXIS II
In a move to increase rigor, the Board of Education eliminated the use of the composite score to achieve a passing score for new Praxis I assessment used for entry into Virginia's State-Aprroved programs
as well as not using a composite score for the new Elementary Education Praxis II. Terming the use of the composite score as not acceptable and a means of masking a person's shortcomings in a specific area,
Dr. Pat Wright, Superintendent of Public Instruction, spoke out and strongly supported the recommended changes. The effective date of the new Praxis I assessments is January 1, 2014 while the new elementary education
Praxis II is July 1, 2014.
TWO NEW VIRGINIA LICENSES
Again, through legislative action, the Virginia DOE will be establishing two new licenses. One will be an Online License that will be required for any teacher wanting to teach just online courses.
The requirements to hold this license will be basically the same as our standard CP, PGP, and TP licenses. At the same time, individuals who hold CP, PGP and/or TP licenses will be allowed to teach online classes in their endorsed area.
The second license will be called a Teach For America provisional license. This will add another alternate route to licensure for individuals who have at least two years of experience with Teach for America. These teachers will become
eligible for this license after serving two years in a TFA position and by meeting the Licensure Regulations course work requirements or by passing our required content knowledge assessments.
NEW ASSESSMENTS FOR TECHNOLOGY EDUCATION, VISUAL ARTS, AND BRAILLE
Effective September 1, 2011, a new test will be offered to replace the current Technology Education assessment, Test Code 0050.
The new test is coded 0051 and has a passing score of 162. The old assessment will be accepted if taken before September 1, 2011.
Also a new Art Education assessment and cut score has been approved for the Visual Arts endorsement. The old test (code 0133) is valid
if taken before September 1, 2011 while the new test (code 0134) with a passing score of 158 can be taken after September 1, 2011.
In addition, a new Braille Proficiency assessment has been approved and is required for those applying for initial licensure in Visual Impairments effective
July 1, 2011 except for teachers completing the approved Virginia Visual Impairments Consortium Program who must meet this requirement effective July 1, 2012.
The test Code for this assessment is 0631 with a passing score of 168.
NEW READING ASSESSMENT TO REPLACE THE VRA
The Virginia Department of Education announced on November 1, 2010, that the Educational Testing Service (ETS)
was contracted to develop new reading assessments for Virginia Teachers. The Reading for Virginia Educators (RVE)
will be required for all teachers seeking an initial license with endorsements in PK-3, PK-6, Special Education General Curriculum,
Hearing Impaired or Visual Impairments. A separte test, the Reading for Virginia Educators-Reading Specialists assessment, will be required for all teachers
seeking a Reading Specialist Endorsement. These new assessments will replace the current VRA assessments that is used for the same group of teachers.
The effective date of the new assessments will be July 1, 2011. There will be a field test conducted in early in 2011 and based on
the results of the field testing,a passing score will be recommended to the State Board of Education. The test will be offered through six
Prometric Centers located in Bristol, Falls Church, Lynchburg, Newport News, Glen Allen and Roanoke.
NEW PRAXIS II ASSESSMENTS APPROVED FOR THIS FALL
The Virginia Board of Education has approved new Praxis II assessments and cut scores for four areas. The new tests are for
the Business Information and Technology endorsement (formerly Business Education) and for the World Languages of Spanish, French
and German. The interesting point with the new foreign language assessments is that they can be used to meet the endorsement requirements
for initial licensure for native and professional level speakers. As a result, an applicant will now have only one test to take to meet
both the endorsement and licensure requirements in these foreign languages. In the past, for those not eligible for Virginia's Experiential
Learning Credits Program, an applicant would need both the ACTFL test and the Praxis II if they were not using college credit to meet
the endorsement requirements. These new tests will be offered for the first time this fall. The old tests taken prior to September 2010
will still be accepted by the DOE for licesnure purposes.
OUT-OF-STATE LICENSE MODIFICATION
The DOE has modified the rules regarding out-of-state licenses needed to meet Virginia's licensure assessment exemption. In the past,
an applicant would need a current, valid, professional license with no deficiencies from one of the other 49 U.S. states.
Licenses from Puerto Rico, US Territories and Department of Defense licenses were not accepted. This policy has now been revised. Now
valid licenses without deficiencies from the other 49 states as well Puerto Rico, US Territories (American Samoa, Guam, US Virgin Islands)
and licenses issued by the Department of Defense Education Activity will now be accepted towards meeting the assessment exemption.
Remember, THREE years of successful, full-time teaching experience in an accredited public or nonpublic school outside of Virginia
along with the valid license is also required to receive this exemption.
NEW SLLA TEST AND CUT SCORE APPROVED
At its January 14, 2010 meeting, the Board of Education approved the cut score on the new School
Leader's Licensure Assessment. ABTEL recommended a passing score of 161. However, the Board felt
that that score was too low and approved a passing score of 163. At the same time,
the Board will require that the passing score be reviewed after three test administrations.
EDUCATION SPECIALIST DEGREE NOW ADDED TO VA LICENSE
In the past, DOE only put bachelor's degree, master's degree or a PhD., on an individual's license. Now individuals who
have earned an education specialist degree, a degree between the master's and PhD., can have that degree noted
on his/her license. There is a $25 fee to add the degree to an existing license but no additional fee is needed when submitted as
part of one's initial license application.
CALCampus COURSEWORK NOT ACCEPTED
DOE has determined that coursework completed at CALCampus is not going to be accepted as it
is not regionally accredited. Some confusion exists as the accreditation report for this activity includes
the North Central Association but it is not the same as it must read the Higher Learning Commission and
North Central Association.
SCHOOL COUNSELOR ALTERNATE ROUTE REVISED
In October 2008, Dr. Lanham at DOE issued new guidance regarding using the alternate route to licensure for the school
counselor program. In the past, if you could not find a licensed school counselor or a graduate of a school counselor
program, you then had the option of hiring a person who had a master's in counseling (Rehab Counseling; Psychology Counseling, etc.)
Then that person would have to take a graduate-level K-12 school counselor course and be mentored by a fully licensed
school counselor for two years to meet the requirements for a five-year renewable Pupil Personnel Services License.
The regulations require completion of a master's degree program in school counseling and it is DOE's view that anything
other than this would be an extreme exception. School divisions must now check the transcripts of those applicants
without a school counselor program master's to see if there is a direct match. If not and the school division still
would like to hire the candidate, a request must be made to either Patty Pitts or Dr. Lanham.
Should you have an
applicant seeking an alternate route to that endorsement who holds a non-school counseling master's, I would recommend
that you send that person to a Virginia college/university that offers a school counselor program. The applicant would
then ask the college/university to list the courses they would need to meet the school counselor endorsement.
If it is three or less courses, I would then have the school superintendent forward a request to DOE for the program modification.
This would verify to the Department of Education that the applicant's course of study now matches Virginia's
school counselor requirements listed in the Licensure Regulations.
In the past, PA licenses were valid for 6 years of teaching experience in the state no matter when the license was issued. VA DOE recently learned that PA has gone to a five-year renewable license and will not accept the license if it is over five years old even if there is teaching time left on it.
However, a prospective applicant from PA did not agree with Virginia's ruling and got a letter from Pennsylvania's DOE which said the following:" At this time, this (person's) certification is active and valid in Pennsylvania. The five-year period for this certification is July 1, 2005 through June 30, 2010 and every five-year period thereafter." For that reason the school division concerned sent that letter back to DOE and got the decision reversed. This decision allowed this teacher to be exempt from Virginia's assessments. Please be aware of this fact as you process new hires from PA who might be eligible for the assessment exemption and may be in a similar circumstance with regard to the validity of their license.
NEW SPECIAL EDUCATION ENDORSEMENTS CAN BE AN ISSUE FOR OUT-OF-STATE APPLICANTS:
Out-of-state applicants holding single special education disbility endorsements are no longer considered holding a "comparable" teaching license. As a result, they will be required to take additional course work to meet the requirements of Virginia's new Special Education General Curriculum and Adaptive Curriculum endorsements. The DOE is working on a conversion chart so that applicants will have a better idea of course work requirements they will need to complete to be fully endorsed/licensed in Virginia. This change will not affect applicants from states like New York and Pennsylvania who issue generic endorsements that meet ED, LD and MR areas and thus would be eligible for the new General Curriculum endorsement.
TESTING OUT OPTION AND PROFESSIONAL STUDIES:
Questions have arisen regarding the requirement to take additional professional studies courses should an indivdual test out to add an endorsement. Based on information provided by DOE, no additional professional studies courses are required for individuals who hold a valid five-year renewable license and test out to add an endorsement.
NEW LICENSURE REGULATIONS APPROVED AND IMPLEMENTED EFFECTIVE SEPTEMBER 21, 2007:
DOE implemented its new Licensure Regulations for School Personnel as well as the new Licensure Renewal Manual on September 21, 2007. These documents can be found on the DOE web site.
HOUSSE Options To Be Eliminated:
As previously reported, the USED cited Virginia on two of its HOUSSE HQ options. The first option questioned was the use of the middle education Praxis II by Special Education
teachers to be HQ at both the middle and high school level. The second questioned regular education elementary, middle and secondary teachers who
used any master's degree to be rated HQ. Based on USED's citation, the Board of Education approved at its September 27 meeting in Final Review a change in both. The middle education Praxis II
can no longer be used by SPED teachers at the high school level unless they are teaching students with disabilities who are not earning a credit in a core area towards a standard
diploma. Regarding the master's degree, a teacher must earn the advanced degree in the core subject area(s) being taught to be considered HQ. For example, a master's in curriculum
and instruction or administration and supervision can no longer be used to meet the HQ requirement. DOE recently announced that those individuals who met the HQ standards using
the cited options would be "grandfathered". However, it was also announced that on June 30, 2008, HOUSSE options would be eliminated except for eight
exceptional cases. See Supts Memo #43 dated February 23, 2007 for additional information.
Pennsylvania Citizenship 7-12 Endorsement
DOE has reported that teachers from Pennsylvania holding a Citizenship 7-12 endorsement will be eligible for Virginia's
History and Social Science endorsement and can teach those subjects in grades 6-12.
Experiential Learning Credits Aids Career Switchers
Supts Regulatory Memo #13 dated Novemebr 10, 2005 provided
guidance on a new endorsement and licensure policy for Career Switchers. Experiential Learning Credits
was established for individuals who meet three requirements: (1) Hold as a minimum a bachelor's degree; (2) Completed at least five years of
professional work experience in an area that MAY be related to the endorsement being sought; and (3) can pass the Praxis II in their content area. Should they meet these requirements AND be hired by a school division, they can receive a provisional license without requiring further evaluation of their transcripts to determine if they need to complete additional content course work. These individuals must still complete
the required professional studies courses as well as the VCLA. At its May 1, 2006 training session, DOE also extended
this "testing out" policy to career switchers already holding licenses. It was not extended to fully licensed teachers whose only work experience
is teaching. This policy DOES NOT extend to and does not allow testing out for those teachers seeking the elementary education endorsement.
Provisional and Conditional License Extensions Stopped/Provisional License Changes
DOE notified local school divisions on October 4, 2005, that they will have until November 1, 2005, to submit requests for extension for Academic Year 2005-06 for those holding provisional or conditional
licenses. However, no extensions will be granted to those who have not yet completed the required assessments. After that date, no extension requests
will be honored. In addition, once the new regulations are implemented, conditional and eligibility licenses will be
consolidated under the provisional license.
School Leaders Licensure Assessment (SLLA) Effective Date and Cut Score Announced:
At the November 17, 2004, meeting the Board passed in FINAL REVIEW the recommended cut-score of 165 for the SLLA.
Superintendent's Memo # 23, dated May 13, 2005, announced that the SLLA requirement and cut score is effective July 1, 2005.
You should also refer to the SLLA Q&A at this link to help you answer any questions related to this assessment.
Virginia Reading Assessments (VRA) and Cut Scores Approved:
Virginia Reading Assessments will be required for elementary education, special education (with exceptions noted below)
and reading specialists whose initial license applications are submitted on/after January 1 , 2005. It will also be
required for individuals adding the reading specialist endorsement to an existing license. At its July 27 meeting, the Virginia Board of Education
passed in FINAL REVIEW cut scores for the two tests. A cut score of 235 was recommended for the elementary and special education teachers' assessment and
a cut score of 245 was recommended for the reading specialists' assessment. The cut scores become effective on July 1, 2006.
HOUSSE Requirements for Experienced Teachers
Dr. Elliott presented for final review the HOUSSE for experienced teachers. One change was made to the HOUSSE.
Definition of Alternate Route for Highly Qualified Teachers
The Board of Education passed in final review Virginia's definition of alternate route
for highly qualified teachers. See Superintendent's Memo # 97, dated May 7, 2004, for all the
American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) passing score
The Board PASSED in Final Review "advanced low" as the passing score for the ACTFL foreign language oral
and written proficiency tests in Virginia.
Virginia Community College System's (VCCS) Career Switcher Program
Please note that the VCCS' Career Switcher Program has been added to the list of Career Switcher program providers.
Go to the DOE web site at www.doe.virginia.gov for more information.
Business Education-Business Systems and Procedures Course:
Many questions arise over what course can be taken to meet the competencies required for Business
Systems and Procedures requirement for the business education endorsement. The Career and Technical
Education branch at DOE has approved the use of AST 243, Office Administration I, offered through Northern
Virginia Community College, to meet this requirement.
House Bill 1048, approved by the Governor on April 15 and effective July 1, 2004, provides
legislation that will not allow the issue of a local license for special education and the
core academic areas as defined in the NCLB Act. Check the DOE web site at
www.doe.virginia.gov and go to the drop-down
box and then to the legislative tracking report for specific details on the legislation.
Virginia Teaching and Educator Query:
A Teaching and Educator query screen has been added to the DOE web site at the Teacher Education
and Licensure page. This site provides information concerning active teaching and educator licenses
only, as issued by the Virginia Board of Education. Licenses that are inactive (expired), pending action,
or on hold are not included in this query. Local licenses also are not included.