P.O. BOX 2120

October 6, 2000

TO: Division Superintendents
FROM: Jo Lynne DeMary
Superintendent of Public Instruction
SUBJECT: Elective Courses for Verified Credit

The Regulations Establishing Standards for Accrediting Public Schools in Virginia (8 VAC 20-131-10 et. seq.) adopted by the Board of Education became effective September 28, 2000. In 8 VAC 20-131-110.B. of those standards, there is a provision that will allow students to earn verified credit in an academic area for completion of certain elective courses approved by the Board. Specifically, the provision states:

B. A verified unit of credit for graduation shall be based on a minimum of 140 clock hours of instruction, successful completion of the requirements of the course, and the achievement by the student of a passing score on the end-of-course SOL test for that course or additional tests as described in this subsection. In accordance with provisions of the Standards of Quality, students may earn a standard and verified unit of credit for any elective course in which the core academic SOL course content has been integrated and the student passes the related end-of-course SOL test. Such course and test combinations must be approved by the Board. If a school wishes to exercise this provision, the division superintendent should submit a written request to the Department of Educationís Division of Accountability. The request should include: The Department of Educationís instructional staff will review the request and supporting documentation and make a recommendation to the Board of Education.

Please forward requests to Dr. Cheri Magill, director of accreditation, ( The Board of Education would like to consider initial requests at its November 30 meeting. All requests received by November 1 will be presented to the Board for first review at that meeting. Requests received after this date will be reviewed and taken to the Board on a case-by-case basis.

If you have questions about course content, please contact the appropriate content specialist in the division of instruction. If you have questions about the approval process, please contact Dr. Cheri Magill at (804) 225-2708.