COMMONWEALTH of VIRGINIA
Department of Education
April 6, 2012
TO: Division Superintendents
FROM: Patricia I. Wright, Superintendent of Public Instruction
Regulations Establishing Standards for Accrediting Public Schools in Virginia contain provisions for awards for exemplary performance for students who meet the requirements for graduation. Students who demonstrate academic excellence may be eligible for one or more of the following awards:
1. The Governor's Seal shall be awarded to students who complete the requirements for an Advanced Studies Diploma with an average grade of "B" or better and successfully complete college-level coursework that will earn the student at least nine transferable college credits in Advanced Placement (AP), International Baccalaureate (IB), Cambridge, or dual enrollment courses.
2. The Board of Education Seal shall be awarded to students who complete the requirements for a Standard Diploma or Advanced Studies Diploma with an average grade of "A."
3. The Board of Education's Career and Technical Education Seal will be awarded to students who earn a Standard or Advanced Studies Diploma and complete a prescribed sequence of courses in a career and technical education concentration or specialization that they choose and maintain a "B" or better average in those courses; or (i) pass an examination or an occupational competency assessment in a career and technical education concentration or specialization that confers certification or occupational competency credential from a recognized industry, trade or professional association or (ii) acquire a professional license in that career and technical education field from the Commonwealth of Virginia. The Board of Education shall approve all professional licenses and examinations used to satisfy these requirements. Please view the following Web link for additional information: http://www.doe.virginia.gov/administrators/superintendents_memos/2011/060-11.shtml.
4. The Board of Education's Seal of Advanced Mathematics and Technology will be awarded to students who earn either a Standard or Advanced Studies Diploma and (i) satisfy all of the mathematics requirements for the Advanced Studies Diploma (four units of credit including Algebra II; two verified units of credit) with a "B" average or better; and (ii) either (a) pass an examination in a career and technical education field that confers certification from a recognized industry, or trade or professional association; (b) acquire a professional license in a career and technical education field from the Commonwealth of Virginia; or (c) pass an examination approved by the Board that confers college-level credit in a technology or computer science area. The Board of Education shall approve all professional licenses and examinations used to satisfy these requirements. Please view the following Web link for additional information: http://www.doe.virginia.gov/administrators/superintendents_memos/2011/060-11.shtml.
5. The Board of Education’s Seal for Excellence in Civics Education will be awarded to students who earn either a Modified Standard, Standard, or Advanced Studies Diploma and (i) complete Virginia and United States History and Virginia and United States Government courses with a grade of "B" or higher; and (ii) have good attendance and no disciplinary infractions as determined by local school board policies, and (iii) complete 50 hours of voluntary participation in community service or extracurricular activities. Activities that would satisfy the requirements of clause (iii) of this subdivision include: (a) volunteering for a charitable or religious organization that provides services to the poor, sick or less fortunate; (b) participating in Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, or similar youth organizations; (c) participating in JROTC; (d) participating in political campaigns or government internships, or Boys State, Girls State, or Model General Assembly; or (e) participating in school-sponsored extracurricular activities that have a civics focus. Any student who enlists in the United States military prior to graduation will be deemed to have met this community service requirement. Please note that the Board’s regulation now addresses the awarding of this diploma to those students who earn a Modified Standard Diploma.
6. Students may receive other seals or awards for exceptional academic, career and technical, citizenship, or other exemplary performance in accordance with criteria defined by the local school board.
Local school boards determine the design and use of other seals. The Department, through James River Press, can only make available those seals specifically outlined in this memorandum and does not have access to any other seals used by local boards.
For the 2012 school year, orders for diploma seals will be taken directly by:
James River Press
807 Oliver Hill Way
Richmond, VA 23218
Contact: Brooke Rhodes
School divisions should only order the seals needed for diplomas awarded during spring and summer 2012. James River Press has notified the Department that it cannot accept orders that are placed after June 20, 2012. James River Press will only accept orders from the central office of the school division and orders from individual schools cannot be accepted.
Information regarding diploma seals can be found at: http://www.doe.virginia.gov/instruction/graduation/diploma_seals/index.shtml. For questions about a student’s eligibility for a specific Board-approved seal, please contact the Office of Policy at (804) 225-2092, or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. For specific questions related to order for seals, please contact James River Press.