COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA
DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION
P. O. BOX 2120
RICHMOND, VIRGINIA 23218-2120

SUPTS. MEMO. NO. 116
June 21, 1996

INFORMATIONAL

TO: Division Superintendents
FROM: William C. Bosher, Jr.
Superintendent of Public Instruction
SUBJECT: American Sign Language course work and foreign language credit


  House Joint Resolution No. 228 (Delegate James H. Dillard,
  Fairfax) of the 1996 General Assembly requests that public
  schools and public and private institutions of higher
  education in Virginia recognize American Sign Language (ASL)
  course work for foreign language credit.  A copy of the
  resolution is enclosed. 
  
  As requested by the General Assembly, Ms. Michelle Easton,
  President of the Board of Education, is transmitting a copy
  of the resolution to local school boards.
  
  Superintendent's Informational Memorandum No. 126 dated  May
  31, 1989 established that credits earned in American Sign
  Language course work would satisfy the foreign language
  requirements of the advanced studies diploma.  A student may
  apply two credits of ASL and two credits of another foreign
  language to earn that diploma.  Many students in Virginia
  have earned foreign language credit through successful
  completion of American Sign Language course work.  
  
  School divisions seeking resources will find valuable
  assistance from the Virginia Department for the Deaf and
  Hard of Hearing (VDDHH).  VDDHH maintains a resource library
  that includes materials regarding American Sign Language,
  ASL curriculum and  instruction, and Deaf culture.  In
  addition, VDDHH staff members have extensive experience in
  ASL and curriculum development in ASL and Deaf culture. 
  VDDHH can be contacted at 1-800-552-7917 (voice/TTY).
  
  For further information about this resolution, you may
  contact Dr. Lissa Power-deFur in the Division of Policy and
  Public Affairs at (804) 225-2818.
  
  WCBJr/lpdf
  Enclosure:   This memo and its enclosure will be sent to
               the superintendent's office
  
  c: Ms. Susan Walker-Buckland, Director
     Virginia Department for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing