Superintendent’s Memo #207-13

State seal, Commonwealth of Virginia

Department of Education

August 9, 2013

TO:  Division Superintendents

FROM:  Patricia I. Wright, Superintendent of Public Instruction

SUBJECT:  Modified Oral Proficiency Interview (MOPI) Institute for Foreign Language Teachers, October 2-4, 2013

The Department of Education is pleased to announce the “Modified Oral Proficiency Interview (MOPI) Institute,” to be held October 2-4, 2013, at the Fort Magruder Hotel in Williamsburg, Virginia as a pre-conference Institute in conjunction with the annual Foreign Language Association of Virginia (FLAVA) conference.  The goal of this Institute is to provide foreign language teachers with the training needed to assess students’ oral language proficiency on the American Council for the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) rating scale.

The Institute is open to 50 foreign language teachers in teams of two participants from any one school division.  Participants may include any K-12 modern foreign language teacher or foreign language department chair.  Participants will be expected to incorporate the Oral Proficiency Interview assessment techniques in the foreign language classroom and to share the information with other foreign language teachers in the division.

The Institute will begin at 8 a.m. on October 2, 2013.  Attachment A contains an agenda of the event.  Materials, hotel accommodations, a continental breakfast, lunch, and breaks will be provided.  Dinner will be provided on day one of the Institute only as part of a plenary session.  Participants are required to be present for all event and meal functions.

MOPI Registration - The cost for the MOPI Institute will be paid by the Virginia Department of Education.  Registration is limited to 50 teachers and the deadline to apply is September 9, 2013.  Divisions may submit nominations for the Institute by e-mailing the application form, Attachment B, to Dr. Lisa Harris, specialist for foreign languages, at  The selection process will address regional representation and priority will be given to registering teachers who teach in high poverty areas.  Please note that successful submission of the registration form does not guarantee acceptance into the Institute.  Applicants will be notified of their acceptance status via e-mail on September 11, 2013.

FLAVA Conference - Participants must also register for the FLAVA conference to qualify for participation in the MOPI Institute.  FLAVA conference registration information is located on the Web at:  School divisions are encouraged to cover this expense as this cost is not assumed by the Virginia Department of Education.

Lodging - The Department of Education will fund one double-occupancy hotel room for three nights for each participating school division that is 25 miles or more from Fort Magruder Hotel at Williamsburg, Virginia.  After those participants who are traveling 25 miles or more register for the Institute, the DOE will make all lodging reservations and cancellations for those participants.  Participants who wish to add on an extra night for the FLAVA conference should indicate this in the appropriate place on the registration form.  School divisions are encouraged to cover the expense for the third night as these costs are not assumed by the Virginia Department of Education.

Substitute Teachers - School divisions may request reimbursement for substitute teacher expenses for a maximum of two teachers for three days each, by mailing Attachment C, Request for Reimbursement of Substitute Teacher Expenses, to Dr. Lisa Harris, specialist for foreign languages, after the completion of the workshop at the address on the form.

ACTFL Certification - Participants who complete the Institute are eligible to take the ACTFL certification test.  Participants who successfully complete the certification testing will become ACTFL certified testers who can then assess students beyond their individual classrooms using the MOPI assessment.  The certification testing fee is $300 and the teacher or division who pays for the certification testing may request a full or partial reimbursement of the testing fee upon successful completion of the certification process.  Reimbursement requests should be submitted to Dr. Lisa Harris, specialist for foreign languages, at the address listed on Attachment D, Request for Reimbursement of ACTFL Certification Testing Fees.  The amount of the reimbursement will range from 50 to 100 percent of the fee contingent on available funds.

Mileage - School divisions are encouraged to cover travel expenses for division participants for the Institute, as this cost is not assumed by the Virginia Department of Education.

Directions - Hotel directions for Fort Magruder in Williamsburg, Virginia may be found at:

Reimbursements - The deadline for substitute teacher reimbursement requests is December 13, 2013.  The deadline for ACTFL certification testing reimbursement requests is April 30, 2014.

For program or registration questions, please contact Dr. Lisa Harris, specialist for foreign languages, by e-mail at or by telephone at (804) 225-3666.



  1. Institute Agenda (PDF)
  2. Institute Registration Form (Word)
  3. Request for Reimbursement of Substitute Teacher Expenses (Word)
  4. Request for Reimbursement of ACTFL Certification Testing Fees (Word)