COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA

DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION

P.O. BOX 2120

RICHMOND, VIRGINIA 23218-2120

SUPTS. MEMO NO. 212

September 28, 2007

INFORMATIONAL

TO:

Division Superintendents

 

FROM:

Billy K. Cannaday, Jr.

Superintendent of Public Instruction

 

SUBJECT:

Length of School Year

 

The purpose of this memorandum is to notify you of the provisions of Board of Education regulations and the Code of Virginia regarding reductions in the length of the school term. The procedures for making up missed teaching days and hours are required by 22.1-98 of the Code of Virginia and the Board of Educations Regulations Governing Reduction of State Aid When Length of School Term Below 180 Teaching Days or 990 Teaching Hours, at 8 VAC 20-521-10.

 

The Code of Virginia, 22.1-98, requires that the length of every schools term be at least 180 teaching days or 990 teaching hours. This Code section also prescribes how school divisions shall make up teaching days and teaching hours when severe weather conditions or other emergency situations require the closing of a school or schools in a school division. Severe weather conditions or other emergency situations is defined as those circumstances presenting a threat to the health or safety of students that result from severe weather conditions or other emergencies, including, but not limited to, natural and man-made disasters, emergency shortages or power failures.

 

In accordance with 22.1-98 of the Code of Virginia, when severe weather or other emergency situations result in the closing of a school or schools in a school division, missed instructional time must be made up through one of the following options:

 

 

  • for five or fewer days, the school or schools shall make up all of the missed days by adding teaching days to the school calendar or extending the length of the school day;

 

  • for six days or more, the school or schools shall make up the first five days plus one day for each two days missed in excess of the first five by adding teaching days to the school calendar or extending the length of the school day;

 

  • if the school is unable to meet the 180 teaching day requirement, the school division may make up the missed teaching days by providing students with instructional hours equivalent to the missed teaching days to meet the minimum 990 teaching hour requirement.

 

In the event of a declared state of emergency, the Board of Education may waive the requirement that school divisions provide additional teaching days or teaching hours to compensate for school closings. A declared state of emergency is defined in 22.1-98 as the declaration of an emergency before or after an event, by the Governor or by officials in a locality that requires the closure of any or all schools within a school division.

 

The Board of Education regulations at 8 VAC 20-521-60 require school division superintendents to certify by April 15 of each school year that they have read and complied with the provisions regarding the length of the school year and are implementing a plan to make up any missed time that has not been waived. The Department of Education will provide further instructions regarding this certification process early in calendar year 2008.

 

The statute and regulations contain additional information and requirements that have not been covered in this memorandum. Therefore, both 22.1-98 of the Code of Virginia and the Board of Educations regulation are attached for your review.

 

If you have questions or would like additional information, please contact the Office of Policy at (804) 225-2092 or at policydata@doe.virginia.gov.

 

BKCJr/MJP/kfg

 

Attachments

 

http://www.doe.virginia.gov/administrators/superintendents_memos/2007/inf212a.pdf

http://www.doe.virginia.gov/administrators/superintendents_memos/2007/inf212b.pdf