Superintendent’s Memo #158-13

State seal, Commonwealth of Virginia

COMMONWEALTH of VIRGINIA
Department of Education

June 7, 2013

TO:  Division Superintendents

FROM:  Patricia I. Wright, Superintendent of Public Instruction

SUBJECT:  Virginia Middle School Teacher Corps Applications

The Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) is pleased to announce the continuation of the Virginia Middle School Teacher Corps (MSTC) for the 2013-2014 school year.  The program is designed to reinforce the quality of mathematics instruction in middle schools and to help ensure that students receive a solid foundation in mathematics as they prepare to enter high school.

The purpose of the program is to help middle-grades schools designated as “at risk” in mathematics to fill their mathematics teaching vacancies with or retain mathematics teachers who have experience in achieving student academic success.  MSTC teachers must have at least three years experience in full-time teaching of middle or high school mathematics and have demonstrated success in teaching students at risk of failure.

A list of middle-grades schools eligible to participate in the MSTC initiative in 2013-2014, is located on the VDOE Web site at http://www.doe.virginia.gov/teaching/career_resources/middle_teacher_corps/index.shtml.  These are schools that are either “Warned in Mathematics” under the state’s school accreditation process; did not meet mathematics “Annual Measurable Objectives” (AMOs) under the federal Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA), as amended by the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (NCLB); and/or are identified as Priority Schools, where mathematics is an area identified for improvement.

An eligible middle-grades school may use the MSTC program to help 1) fill mathematics teacher vacancies with or 2) retain experienced mathematics teachers.  The school, through the school division, may apply for funding to provide an annual salary differential of $10,000 for MSTC teachers new to schools and/or $5,000 for MSTC teachers currently in schools. Priority will be given to funding teachers new to a school.  If the MSTC school application meets the priority criteria and is approved, and the school is paired with an approved MSTC teacher, the school division of the eligible school will be awarded funds to provide the salary differential for three years, contingent upon the availability of state funding.

School divisions may include the MSTC teacher salary differential as creditable compensation for improved teacher retirement benefits under the Virginia Retirement System.  The salary differential incentive payment is taxable to the recipient, and the school division assumes responsibility for ensuring that all taxes and/or Virginia Retirement System match are remitted.  All MSTC awards are contingent upon available funding from the Virginia General Assembly.

Additional information about the program may be found in the MSTC School Application and the MSTC Teacher Application, Attachments A and B to this memorandum, and on the VDOE Web site at http://www.doe.virginia.gov/teaching/career_resources/middle_teacher_corps/index.shtml.  If you need additional information or have questions about the MSTC program, please contact Mrs. Kim Powell, grants manager, Office of Science and Health Education,
by e-mail at Kim.Powell@doe.virginia.gov or by telephone at (804) 225-3609; or Mr. Jim Firebaugh, science and mathematics specialist, by e-mail at Jim.Firebaugh@doe.virginia.gov or by telephone
at (804) 225-3688.

PIW/JF/rt

Attachments:

  1. The Virginia Middle School Teacher Corps School Application (Word)
  2. The Virginia Middle School Teacher Corps Teacher Application (Word)