P.O. BOX 2120




January 10, 2003



Division Superintendents



Jo Lynne DeMary

Superintendent of Public Instruction



Revisions to the Criteria for Identification and Selection of Models/Programs


At the January 6 Board of Education meeting revisions to the criteria for identifying and selecting models/programs that include instructional methods as provided in 8 VAC 20-131-310 B-E were approved. The revisions are based on the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) of 2001 emphasis on the use of scientifically-based research as a criteria for evaluating programs, particularly those programs purchased with federal funds. The revised criteria are:

Criteria for Recommended Models/Programs

1.  Scientifically-based evidence of effectiveness: The effectiveness of models/programs are justified based on scientific research that involves the application of rigorous, systematic, and objective procedures to obtain reliable and valid knowledge on the models/programs. The major components of the model/program include instructional methods and practices that have been verified through scientifically-based research. The research that documents improvement in student achievement has presented convincing evidence that the observed results were based on the model/program intervention. The model/programs effectiveness in improving student achievement has been demonstrated in Virginia and is based on effective research-based strategies. Gains in student achievement on Virginias Standards of Learning tests have been sustained over time.

2.  Implementation and capacity for technical assistance: The model/program has explained the essential ingredients necessary to make the program fully operational, including estimates of the costs, with respect to time and money, and the requirements for implementation. The program managers have described in detail their capacity, in terms of technical assistance, to provide the staff development, consultation, and support necessary for successful implementation in a number of Virginia schools.

3.  Replicability: The model/program effectiveness has been demonstrated through multiple investigations in numerous locations with low-achieving students.

4.  Correlation with or adaptability to the Virginia Standards of Learning in English or mathematics: The content of the model/program correlates with the Virginia Standards of Learning in English or mathematics or the model/program can be adapted to the Virginia Standards of Learning.


The attached list of models/programs categorizes the Boards previously approved models/programs as comprehensive (English/Reading, mathematics, or reform models) or supplemental/intervention (English/Reading, mathematics, or reform models) and the intended grade levels. The Department of Education will review each of the previously approved models to ensure that the revised criteria are met. Results of this review will be shared with the Board of Education for appropriate action.


The revised Standards of Accreditation require schools accredited with warning in English or mathematics to adopt and implement instructional methods that have a proven track record of success at raising student achievement.


For more information about instructional models, please contact Maureen B. Hijar (, director, Office of Secondary Instructional Services, at (804) 225-2894. For more information on the process for certifying adoption and implementation of instructional models/programs, please contact Dr. Cheri C. Magill (, director, Office of Accreditation, at (804) 225-2708.