Administrative Code

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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 8. Education
Agency 20. State Board of Education
Chapter 131. Regulations Establishing Standards for Accrediting Public Schools in Virginia

8VAC20-131-100. Instructional program in secondary schools.

A. The secondary school, in accordance with the Profile of a Virginia Graduate approved by the board, shall provide a program of instruction to ensure that students (i) attain the knowledge, skills, competencies, and experiences necessary to be successful in the evolving global economy whether immediately entering the world of work or pursuing a postsecondary education and (ii) acquire and be able to demonstrate foundational skills in critical thinking and creative thinking, collaboration, communication, and citizenship in accordance with 8VAC20-131-70 and the Profile of a Virginia Graduate.

The secondary school shall provide each student a program of instruction in the four core academic areas of English, mathematics, science, and history and social science that identifies the knowledge and skills that students should attain, giving due consideration to critical thinking, creative thinking, collaboration, communication, and citizenship, in the early years of high school and enables each student to meet the prescribed graduation requirements. The secondary school shall offer opportunities for each student, including:

1. Career and technical education choices that incorporate knowledge of regional workforce needs and opportunities; prepare the student as a career and technical education program completer in one of three or more occupational areas; and that prepare the student for technical or preprofessional postsecondary programs;

2. Coursework and experiences that prepare the student for college-level studies including access to at least three Advanced Placement (AP) courses, college-level courses for degree credit, International Baccalaureate (IB) courses, Cambridge courses, or any combination thereof;

3. Preparation for college admissions tests;

4. Study and exploration of the fine arts and world languages; and

5. Participation in work experiences such as internships, externships, and other work-based learning experiences, and attaining workforce and career readiness and industry credentials.

B. Minimum course offerings for each secondary school shall provide opportunities for students to meet the graduation requirements stated in this chapter and must include:





Science (Laboratory)


History and Social Science


World Language




Career and Technical Education


Fine Arts


Health and Physical Education


Economics and Personal Finance


Total Units


C. Classroom driver education may count for 36 class periods, or the equivalent in minutes, of health education. Students shall not be removed from classes other than health and physical education for the in-car phase of driver education.

D. Each school shall ensure that students who are unable to read with comprehension the materials used for instruction receive additional instruction in reading, which may include summer school.

E. In accordance with the Standards of Quality, each school shall ensure that students who need targeted mathematics remediation and intervention, including remediation or intervention for computational deficiencies as demonstrated by their individual performance on any diagnostic test or grade-level SOL mathematics test shall receive additional instruction in mathematics, which may include summer school. Students in grade 9 who are at-risk of failing the algebra I end-of-course test, as demonstrated by their individual performance on any diagnostic test that has been approved by the department, shall be provided algebra readiness intervention services.

Statutory Authority

§ 22.1-16 and 22.1-253.13:3 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Virginia Register Volume 14, Issue 1, eff. October 29, 1997; amended, Virginia Register Volume 16, Issue 25, eff. September 28, 2000; Volume 22, Issue 24, eff. September 7, 2006; Volume 25, Issue 21, eff. July 31, 2009; Volume 27, Issue 24, eff. August 31, 2011; Volume 34, Issue 8, eff. January 11, 2018.

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