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
10/18/2018

8VAC20-131-400. Application of the School Quality Indicator Performance Levels to Actions.

A. In accordance with the Standards of Quality at § 22.1-253.13:6 C of the Code of Virginia, all schools shall develop a comprehensive, unified, long-range plan. To develop such plans, schools shall conduct a comprehensive needs assessment, in collaboration with their school division staff, to identify needed actions to ensure continuous improvement for their students. Results of the comprehensive needs assessment shall be used to develop a multi-year improvement plan, which shall be a component of the school's comprehensive, unified, long-range plan. The multi-year improvement plan shall be reviewed and updated as needed on an annual basis. Confirmation of completion of the actions required by this section shall be provided to meet requirements of 8VAC20-131-390 A 10.

In determining required actions for schools and school divisions, levels of performance shall be considered separately for each school quality indicator. Responses and actions to be taken by school divisions and schools, under the leadership of division superintendents and school principals, according to the performance level of each school quality indicator are as prescribed in subsections B, C, and D of this section.

B. Level One. If a school quality indicator is at Level One, the school and its school division shall continue to monitor the indicator and the multi-year school improvement plan for continuous improvement.

C. Level Two. If a school quality indicator is at Level Two, the school and its school division shall have primary responsibility to revise and implement its multi-year school improvement plan.

In developing such plan, the school and its school division shall determine the issues and conditions that are likely contributing to the school's performance on the indicator and plan and implement essential actions and research-based strategies designed to improve performance on the indicator to achieve the Level One standard.

School division and school staff shall:

1. Identify factors related to the school's performance on the indicator as part of the school's comprehensive needs assessment;

2. Use the results of the comprehensive needs assessment to develop and revise the multi-year school improvement plan to address the factors identified in the needs assessment that are related to the performance on the indicator. The school's multi-year improvement plan shall be approved by the local school board. The department may implement an audit process to ensure compliance with this provision;

3. Implement the essential actions and research-based strategies with fidelity;

4. Regularly evaluate evidence of the school's progress in implementing the plan, monitor changes on the school quality indicator, and make adjustments as warranted; and

5. Evaluate the progress of the school quality indicators at Level Two at the end of each year and assess the results of the school improvement plan actions at the end of two years. If no progress is made within the two-year period on such school quality indicators, the plan shall be revised.

If any of the academic achievement indicators for all students, as provided in 8VAC20-131-380 F 1 a, 1 b, or 1 c is at Level Two, the school must undergo an academic review conducted by the department, or under its guidance, to further identify required actions to improve student achievement. Review of other indicators by the department, or under its guidance, may occur based on the school's multi-year school improvement plan. School improvement plans developed for academic achievement indicators for all students that are at Level Two shall be reviewed through a department-established process, which may include peer review by staff from other school divisions.

School divisions with indicators at Level Two may request technical assistance from the department.

D. Level Three.

1. Corrective action plans. If any school quality indicator is at Level Three, the school and school division shall work cooperatively and in consultation with the department to develop a corrective action plan, which shall be incorporated as a component of the school's comprehensive, unified, long-range plan.

In developing such plan, the school and school division, in consultation with the department, shall determine the issues and conditions that are likely contributing to the school's performance on the indicator and plan and implement essential actions and research-based strategies to achieve improvement to the Level One standard.

All schools with indicators at Level Three must undergo an academic or other review, as appropriate, conducted by the department, or under its guidance, to further identify required actions to improve student achievement and the school quality indicators that are at Level Three.

a. Considerations for the level of direction and intervention from the department include:

(1) Specific characteristics of the school and school division;

(2) The number of school quality indicators at Level Three for the school;

(3) A school's trajectory on the indicators at Level Three;

(4) The length of time the school indicator has been at Level Three; and

(5) The number of schools in the division with multiple school quality indicators at Level Three.

b. In consultation with department staff, school division and school staff shall:

(1) Identify factors related to the school's performance on the indicators at Level Three as part of the school's comprehensive needs assessment;

(2) Use the results of the comprehensive needs assessment to develop a multi-year corrective action plan that addresses the factors identified in the needs assessment that are related to the performance on the indicator through essential actions and research-based strategies;

(3) Submit the completed corrective action plan to the department through the division superintendent for department approval;

(4) Amend the plan if the department disapproves any portion thereof, as needed to secure the department's approval;

(5) Implement the approved corrective action plan with fidelity; and

(6) Meet regularly with department staff to monitor evidence of the school's progress in implementing the plan, to track improvement on the indicator, and to identify next steps.

2. Superintendent agreement. The level of direction and intervention from the department may include requiring the local school division superintendent and the Superintendent of Public Instruction to enter into an agreement that shall delineate the responsibilities for the school division staff, school staff, and department staff and shall also include required essential actions to improve student achievement and to improve performance on school quality indicators.

3. Memorandum of understanding. School divisions that do not demonstrate evidence of progress in adopting or implementing corrective action plans for a school or schools with indicators at Level Three shall be required to enter into a memorandum of understanding between the local school board and the board. The memorandum of understanding shall delineate responsibilities for the local school board, the board, school division staff, school staff, and department staff and shall also include required essential actions to improve student achievement and to improve performance on school quality indicators.

Department staff shall meet regularly with school division staff to monitor the memorandum of understanding and corrective action plan, to track progress on the indicators, and to identify next steps.

School divisions that do not demonstrate evidence of progress under the memorandum of understanding and the associated corrective action plan shall be subject to additional actions, which may include more frequent meetings with department staff, required technical assistance, or appearance before the board.

4. Denial of accreditation. If a school is designated "Accredited with Conditions," and the school or school division fails to adopt and implement corrective action plans with fidelity as specified by this section, the Superintendent of Public Instruction shall review the school for potential designation by the board as "Accreditation Denied" and shall present the results of such review to the board with recommendations. If the board determines that any such school is at Level Three on any school quality indicator due to its failure to adopt and implement corrective action plans with fidelity as required by this section, the board shall designate such school as "Accreditation Denied." The local school board shall be given an opportunity to correct such failure, and if successful in a timely manner, the school's "Accreditation Denied" designation may be rescinded at the board's discretion.

5. At-risk add-on funds. As provided in the appropriation act, if the board has required a local school board to submit a corrective action plan pursuant to § 22.1-253.13:3 A of the Code of Virginia, either for the school division pursuant to a division level review or for any schools within its division that have been designated as not meeting the standards as approved by the board, the Superintendent of Public Instruction shall determine and report to the board whether each such local school board has met its obligation to develop and submit such corrective action plan and is making adequate and timely progress in implementing the plan. Additionally, if an academic review process undertaken pursuant to § 22.1-253.13:3 A of the Code of Virginia has identified actions for a local school board to implement, the Superintendent of Public Instruction shall determine and report to the board whether the local school board has implemented required actions. If the Superintendent of Public Instruction certifies that a local school board has failed or refused to meet any of those obligations, the board shall withhold payment of some or all at-risk add-on funds otherwise allocated to the affected division pursuant to this allocation for the pending fiscal year. In determining the amount of at-risk add-on funds to be withheld, the board shall take into consideration the extent to which such funds have already been expended or contractually obligated. The local school board shall be given an opportunity to correct its failure and, if successful in a timely manner, may have some or all of its at-risk add-on funds restored at the board's discretion.

6. Additional remedies. The board may exercise its authority to seek school division compliance with school laws pursuant to the relevant provisions of the Code of Virginia when any school within a division receives an accreditation designation other than "Accredited."

In accordance with the Standards of Quality at § 22.1-253.13:3 A of the Code of Virginia, if the board determines that a school division has failed or refused, and continues to fail or refuse, to comply with any of the Standards of Quality, including the requirement for local school boards to maintain schools designated as "Accredited" as provided in § 22.1-253.13:3 A of the Code of Virginia, the board may petition the circuit court having jurisdiction in the school division to mandate or otherwise enforce compliance with such standard, including the development or implementation of any required corrective action plan that a local school board has failed or refused to develop or implement in a timely manner.

Statutory Authority

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

Historical Notes

Derived from Volume 34, Issue 08, eff. January 11, 2018.

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