Administrative Code

Creating a Report: Check the sections you'd like to appear in the report, then use the "Create Report" button at the bottom of the page to generate your report. Once the report is generated you'll then have the option to download it as a pdf, print or email the report.

Virginia Administrative Code
Title 8. Education
Agency 20. State Board of Education
Chapter 90. Procedure for Adjusting Grievances
12/7/2022

8VAC20-90-30. Grievance procedure.

Recognizing that grievances should begin and should be settled promptly, a grievance must be initiated within 15 business days following either the event giving rise to the grievance, or within 15 business days following the time when the employee knew or reasonably should have known of its occurrence. Grievances shall be processed as follows:

1. Step 1 -- Informal. The first step shall be an informal conference between the teacher and his immediate supervisor (which may be the principal). The teacher shall state the nature of the grievance, and the immediate supervisor shall attempt to adjust the grievance. It is mandatory that the teacher present the grievance informally prior to proceeding to Step 2.

2. Step 2 -- Principal. If for any reason the grievance is not resolved informally in Step 1 to the satisfaction of the teacher, the teacher must perfect his grievance by filing a written grievance appeal on the required form within 15 business days following the event giving rise to the grievance, or within 15 business days following the time when the employee knew or reasonably should have known of its occurrence, specifying on the form the specific relief expected. Regardless of the outcome of Step 1, if a written grievance appeal is not, without just cause, filed within the specified time, the grievance will be barred.

A meeting shall be held between the principal (or his designee or both) and the teacher (or his designee or both) within five business days of the receipt by the principal of the written grievance. At such meeting the teacher or other party involved, or both, shall be entitled to present appropriate witnesses and to be accompanied by a representative other than an attorney. The principal (or his designee or both) shall respond in writing within five business days following such meeting.

The principal may forward to the teacher within five days from the receipt of the written grievance a written request for more specific information regarding the grievance. The teacher shall file an answer thereto within 10 business days, and the meeting must then be held within five business days thereafter.

3. Step 3 -- Superintendent. If the grievance is not settled to the teacher's satisfaction in Step 2, the teacher can proceed to Step 3 by filing a written notice of appeal with the superintendent, accompanied by the original written grievance appeal form within five business days after receipt of the Step 2 answer (or the due date of such answer). A meeting shall then be held between the superintendent (or his designee or both) and the teacher (or his designee or both) at a mutually agreeable time within five business days. The superintendent or designee may make a written request for more specific information from the teacher, but only if such information was not requested in Step 2. The teacher shall file an answer to such request within 10 business days, and the meeting shall be held within five business days of the date on which the answer was received. At such meeting both the superintendent and the teacher shall be entitled to present witnesses and to be accompanied by a representative who may be an attorney. A representative may examine, cross-examine, question, and present evidence on behalf of a grievant or the superintendent without violating the provisions of § 54.1-3904 of the Code of Virginia. If no settlement can be reached in said meeting, the superintendent (or his designee) shall respond in writing within five business days following such meeting. If the grievance is not resolved to the satisfaction of the teacher in Step 3, the teacher may request a decision by the school board pursuant to Step 4.

4. Step 4 -- Decision by the school board.

a. If a teacher elects to request a decision by the school board as provided for in Step 3, he must notify the superintendent in writing of the intention to make the request of the board within five business days after receipt of the answer as required in Step 3 or the due date thereof. Upon receipt of such notice, the board may hold a hearing on the grievance, may elect to have the hearing conducted by a hearing officer appointed by the school board consistent with the procedures in § 22.1-311 of the Code of Virginia, or may make its determination on the basis of the written evidence presented by the teacher and the recommendation of the superintendent.

b. In any case in which the school board elects to hold a hearing or elects to have a hearing officer conduct the hearing, the hearing shall be set within 30 days of the school board's receipt of the notice required by subdivision 4 a of this section (Step 4a), and the teacher must be given at least 15 days' written notice of the date, time, and place of the hearing.

The teacher and the division superintendent may be represented by legal counsel or other representatives. The hearing shall be private, unless the teacher requests a public hearing. The school board or the hearing officer, as the case may be, shall establish the rules for the conduct of the hearing. Such rules shall include the opportunity for the teacher and the division superintendent to make an opening statement and to present all material or relevant evidence, including the testimony of witnesses and the right of all parties or their representatives to cross-examine the witnesses. Witnesses may be questioned by the school board or the hearing officer.

In the case of a hearing conducted by the school board, the school board's attorney, assistants, or representative, if he or they represented a participant in the prior proceedings, the grievant, the grievant's attorney or representative and, notwithstanding the provisions of § 22.1-69 of the Code of Virginia, the superintendent shall be excluded from any executive session of the school board that has as its purpose reaching a decision on the grievance. However, immediately after a decision has been made and publicly announced, as in favor of or not in favor of the grievant, the school board's attorney or representative, and the superintendent, may join the school board in executive session to assist in the writing of the decision.

A stenographic record or tape recording of the hearing shall be taken. However, the recording may be dispensed with entirely by mutual consent of the parties. If the recording is not dispensed with, the two parties shall share the cost of the recording equally, and if either party requests a transcript, that party shall bear the expense of its preparation.

c. In the event of a hearing conducted by a hearing officer, the recommendation of the hearing officer shall be based exclusively upon the evidence presented at the hearing. Upon the hearing officer's own motion or upon application by either party to the grievance, the hearing officer may reopen the hearing for the purpose of hearing after-discovered evidence upon a finding of good cause by the hearing officer at any time before his recommendation is due. The hearing officer shall transmit his written recommendation and a record or recording of the hearing to the school board as soon as practicable and no more than 10 business days after the hearing.

d. In the event of a hearing by a hearing officer, the school board may make its decision upon the record or recording of such hearing or the school board may elect to conduct a further hearing to receive additional evidence. The school board must hold such further hearing as soon as practicable and must give written notice of the time and place of such further hearing to the division superintendent and the teacher within 10 business days after the board received the record or recording of the initial hearing. The notice must specify each matter to be inquired into by the school board. The school board shall determine the procedure to be followed at such further hearing.

e. In the event of a hearing before the school board, the school board shall give the teacher its written decision as soon as practicable and no more than 30 days after the hearing. The decision of the school board shall be reached after considering the evidence and information presented at the school board hearing.

f. In the event of a hearing before a hearing officer followed by a further hearing by the school board, the school board shall give the teacher its written decision as soon as practicable and no more than 30 days after such further hearing. The decision of the school board shall be reached after considering the record or recording of the initial hearing, the recommendations of the hearing officer, and the evidence and information presented at the further hearing before the school board.

g. In the event of a hearing before a hearing officer in cases in which no further hearing is conducted by the school board, the school board shall give the teacher its written decision as soon as practicable and no more than 30 days after receiving the record or recording of the hearing. The decision of the school board shall be reached after considering the record or recording of the hearing and the recommendations of the hearing officer.

h. The school board shall retain its exclusive final authority over matters concerning employment and the supervision of its personnel.

Statutory Authority

§§ 22.1-16 and 22.1-308 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from VR270-01-0008 § 2.2, eff. February 1, 1986; amended, Virginia Register Volume 21, Issue 14, eff. May 2, 2005; Volume 33, Issue 5, eff. November 30, 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.

As a service to the public, the Virginia Administrative Code is provided online by the Virginia General Assembly. We are unable to answer legal questions or respond to requests for legal advice, including application of law to specific fact. To understand and protect your legal rights, you should consult an attorney.