Superintendent’s Memo #295-15

State seal, Commonwealth of Virginia

COMMONWEALTH of VIRGINIA
Department of Education

December 11, 2015

TO:  Division Superintendents

FROM:  Steven R. Staples, Superintendent of Public Instruction

SUBJECT: Public Notice:  Regulatory Action Published in the Virginia Register of Regulations – Proposed Procedure for Adjusting Grievances

The Department of Education, on behalf of the Board of Education, announces a regulatory action published in the current issue of the Virginia Register of Regulations.  The link to the announcement is as follows:  8VAC20-90 Procedure for Adjusting Grievances (Proposed Regulation).

On February 27, 2014, the Board of Education approved proposed amendments to the Procedure for Adjusting Grievances.  The proposed amendments conform the regulation to changes in the Code of Virginia enacted by Chapters 588 and 650 of the 2013 Acts of Assembly and Chapters 13 and 103 of the 2014 Acts of Assembly and make other technical and clarifying changes.  The proposed amendments (i) remove a teacher's option to have a grievance heard before a fact-finding panel, (ii) permit a local school board to designate an impartial hearing officer from outside the school division to hear a teacher's grievance, (iii) eliminate probation as a form of discipline, and (iv) reduce the time in which a teacher who received a notice of dismissal has to request a hearing to 10 days.

The proposed regulations were published in the Virginia Register of Regulations VOL. 32 ISS. 7, November 30, 2015.  A public hearing on the proposed regulations will be held Thursday, January 28, 2016, in the 22nd Floor Jefferson Meeting Conference Room, James Monroe Building (101 North 14th Street, Richmond, Virginia 23219). The public hearing will begin immediately following adjournment of the Board of Education business meeting.  Persons wishing to address the Board during the hearing should contact Melissa Luchau, director for board relations, at Melissa.luchau@doe.virginia.gov or (804) 225-2924.  Speakers will be asked to limit their comments to three minutes. Written copies of comments are appreciated, but not required.

An online comment period is now open on Town Hall.  Public comments will be accepted through January 31, 2016.

For questions, please contact Mrs. Patty S. Pitts, assistant superintendent, Division of Teacher Education and Licensure, Department of Education, P. O. Box 2120, Richmond, Virginia 23218-2120, telephone (804) 371-2522, or e-mail Patty.pitts@doe.virginia.gov.

SRS/psp