Superintendent’s Memo #055-13

State seal, Commonwealth of Virginia

COMMONWEALTH of VIRGINIA
Department of Education

March 1, 2013

TO:  Division Superintendents

FROM:  Patricia I. Wright, Superintendent of Public Instruction

SUBJECT:  Review of the Foreign Language Standards of Learning: Seeking Input from the School Community

At the February 28, 2013, Board of Education meeting the Department of Education was authorized to proceed with the K-12 Foreign Language Standards of Learning review process.  It is anticipated that the review will be completed by May 2014.

An important part of this review process is the solicitation of comments from classroom teachers, administrators, curriculum supervisors, foreign language educators, and others who have worked with the current standards.  Please inform personnel in your school division that forms for comments regarding the current standards are located on the Virginia Department of Education Web site at http://www.doe.virginia.gov/testing/sol/standards_docs/foreign_language/2014/index.shtml. Comments will be received at this address from March 1, 2013 to March 31, 2013.

The Department of Education is also seeking nominations from division superintendents for individuals who are qualified and available to serve on the Foreign Language Standards of Learning Review Team.  The team will reflect five committees that will each be charged with the review of one of the five foreign language standards:  French, German, Latin, Spanish, or Modern Foreign Language.  Nominees should be teachers, principals, administrators, content specialists, or other educators who have knowledge of the content areas and experience with standards development.  Team members for the Modern Foreign Language committee will include representatives of the less-commonly-taught languages, including languages with character-based or non-Roman script writing systems, such as Russian or Chinese.

Selected team members will be assigned to a specific foreign language committee and asked to review information related to their content area prior to convening for a three-day committee meeting during the summer 2013.

Committee members who are not under contract or who take personal leave with a school division will receive an incentive for their participation, and all committee members may receive recertification points, pending the approval of their school division.  The Department of Education will cover expenses for mileage, meals, and lodging related to the review process following approved state guidelines.

A nomination form to be duplicated as needed for interested individuals is attached.  Please return nomination forms by April 4, 2013.  Committee members will be notified on or before May 1, 2013.  Committee members will be selected on the basis of expertise and experience in foreign language and balanced regional representation.

If you have questions about the K-12 Foreign Language Standards of Learning review, please contact Dr. Lisa Harris, specialist for foreign languages, Office of Humanities and Early Childhood, by e-mail at Lisa.Harris@doe.virginia.gov or by telephone at (804) 225-3666. 

PIW/LAH/vdg

Attachment:

  1. Superintendentís Nomination Form Foreign Language SOL Review Committee (Word)