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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 8. Education
Agency 20. State Board Of Education
Chapter 340. Regulations Governing Driver Education
11/27/2021

8VAC20-340-40. Approval of correspondence courses for driver education.

A. Required submissions. Schools seeking approval to offer the classroom portion of a driver education program to school-age children through a correspondence program or course in Virginia shall submit the following:

1. A signed and completed copy of the department's affidavit form.

2. A catalog or other documents containing the following information:

a. A statement of ownership or control of the institution;

b. Descriptions of the driver education courses offered by the institution;

c. A description of the method used to evaluate the students' work;

d. A schedule of tuition and fees, including the school's refund policies; and

e. Copies of all application forms and enrollment agreements used by the school.

3. Verification of approval or exemption from regular oversight from the appropriate state or local government agency in the school's state of domicile.

4. Information regarding the school's accreditation status.

5. The name and publisher of the textbook required.

6. An estimate of the minimum amount of time (in hours) required to complete the course.

7. Such additional information as the board or department may deem necessary.

B. All schools must evaluate the students' work at regular intervals specified by the department and maintain a permanent record of the work.

C. Each school meeting the criteria listed in this section is required to submit the required materials for review every year concurrent with the renewal affidavit.

D. Approval criteria. Driver education courses offered by schools submitting the materials required by this section shall be approved when the following criteria have been met:

1. The school is, in fact, a correspondence school as defined in 8VAC20-340-5;

2. The courses offered are consistent with state or federal laws or regulations;

3. The school evaluates the students' progress at regular intervals specified by the department and maintains a permanent record of that work; and

4. The content of each course is accurate and rigorous and meets the requirements of the Curriculum and Administrative Guide for Driver Education in Virginia, 2010 edition, which includes the Driver Education Standards of Learning.

The school must provide evidence that at least two subject matter experts have reviewed and validated the accuracy of online content and textbook materials.

E. An application shall be complete when all required information has been submitted in the form required by the department. If the department, on behalf of the board, determines the application to be incomplete, the department shall notify the applicant of the insufficiencies in writing within 45 days of receipt of the incomplete application. The applicant must submit the required items to complete the application, to be received by the department within 45 days from the notification. If the application is not completed within the 45-day period, the case file for the request for approval as a provider will be closed. At any time prior to closure, the applicant may withdraw the request for approval. The applicant may submit a new application at any time.

F. Approval, denial, and revocation.

1. The department, on behalf of the board, shall notify applicants in writing when an application is approved.

2. Applications that do not meet the criteria required by subsections A, B, and D of this section shall be denied. The department shall notify applicants in writing of the denial, stating the reasons the application was denied and including the applicant's right to request the board to reconsider the application, pursuant to subsection G of this section.

3. An approved application may be revoked for good cause, which includes, but is not limited to, the conviction of the applicant, or any employee thereof, of (i) any felony or (ii) any offense involving the sexual molestation, physical or sexual abuse, or rape of a child.

G. Reconsideration by the Board of Education when an application is denied or when approval is revoked. A school whose application has been denied or whose approval has been revoked for good cause may request reconsideration by letter to the board. The letter of request shall include the reasons that the school believes the denial or revocation was inappropriate and shall document how it has corrected any insufficiency identified in the letter of denial or revocation. The board's decision on reconsideration shall be final on that application; however, a denial of reconsideration shall not prevent the school from submitting a new application at a later time.

H. Determination of continued compliance. Approval of the academic courses shall be renewed annually on or before August 1, provided that the school verifies that it continues to meet the requirements of this section. Forms for this purpose shall be provided by the department.

I. Disclaimer. The Board of Education's approval of a correspondence course is not an endorsement of the program as a substitute for public school programs nor is it an endorsement of the educational or operational philosophy of the school. Additionally, the approval of courses is not intended as an endorsement of the quality of the courses nor is it a conclusion that these courses meet the educational needs of the student or the assessment required by § 22.1-254.1 of the Code of Virginia.

Parents who choose to educate their children at home through a driver education correspondence course are directly responsible for the educational progress of their children and the adequacy of instruction. The board assumes no liability for damages or financial loss to parents using any of the approved driver education correspondence courses.

J. Restrictions. No school whose courses are approved as a driver education program shall advertise in any way that the courses have the endorsement, recommendation, accreditation, or recognition, or any other similar term, of the board, the department, or the Commonwealth of Virginia.

K. Transmitting the affidavit, documents, and other materials. The affidavit, related letters, forms, and other required application materials must be submitted to the Division of Instruction at the Virginia Department of Education by email to the Driver Education Specialist, whose contact information may be found at http://www.doe.virginia.gov/directories/index.shtml#vdoe.

Statutory Authority

§§ 22.1-16 and 22.1-205 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Virginia Register Volume 32, Issue 8, eff. January 13, 2016.

Website addresses provided in the Virginia Administrative Code to documents incorporated by reference are for the reader's convenience only, may not necessarily be active or current, and should not be relied upon. To ensure the information incorporated by reference is accurate, the reader is encouraged to use the source document described in the regulation.

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