September 23, 2016

TO:  Division Superintendents

FROM:  Steven R. Staples, Superintendent of Public Instruction

SUBJECT: Supporting Foreign Language Learning for Students with Disabilities

The Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) is pleased to announce the Foreign Language for All: Meeting the Needs of Diverse Learners Institute to be held on October 20, 2016, from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. as part of the Foreign Language Teachers Workshop Series (FLTWS) in collaboration with the Foreign Language Association of Virginia (FLAVA) and Washington and Lee University.

This professional development opportunity is provided by the state to assist world language and special education teachers in supporting foreign language learning for students with disabilities.  A supporting guidance document will also be available from the VDOE to provide additional information and assistance on this topic.

The workshop will originate at Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Virginia, and will be broadcasted live via the Internet to host sites across the state.  School divisions are encouraged to set up one or more host site locations for local world language and special education teachers to meet and participate in the workshop. 

Each host site will require a host site contact person to serve as a logistical coordinator and to facilitate local group discussions initiated by the workshop leaders at the broadcast location.  These workshops are free of charge, open to FLAVA members and nonmembers. Registration for the workshops will begin October 1.  Participants will receive certificates which may be used for receiving points toward K-12 teacher certification renewal at the discretion of the local school division.

For school divisions not yet registered as a FLTWS host site:

For all school divisions:

Questions regarding FLTWS host site and teacher registration should be directed to Bettina Staudt, FLAVA Professional Development Chair, by email at

Questions regarding the Foreign Language for All: Meeting the Needs of Diverse Learners Institute should be directed to Dr. Lisa A. Harris, Specialist for Foreign Languages and International Education, Office of Humanities and Early Childhood, by email at or by telephone at (804) 225-3666; or Dr. Teresa S. Lee, Education Specialist, Office of Special Education Instructional Services, by email at or by telephone at (804) 371-8283.