December 9, 2016
TO: Division Superintendents
FROM: Steven R. Staples, Superintendent of Public Instruction
SUBJECT: CTE Credential Requirement for the Standard Diploma
The 2012 General Assembly passed, and the Governor signed into law, HB 1061 and SB 489, to strengthen postsecondary education and workplace readiness opportunities for all students. During the 2015 General Assembly HB 2276 amended and reenacted § 22.1-253.13:4 of the Code of Virginia, 8VAC20-131-50.B. Graduation Requirements for the Standard Diploma, as follows:
- Beginning with first-time ninth-grade students in the 2013-2014 school year, requirements for the standard diploma shall include a requirement to earn a career and technical education credential that has been approved by the Board, that except when a career and technical education credential in a particular subject area is not readily available or appropriate or does not adequately measure student competency, in which case the student shall receive competency-based instruction in the subject area to satisfy the standard diploma requirements. The career and technical education credential, when required, could include, but not be limited to, the successful completion of an industry certification, a state licensure examination, a national occupational competency assessment, or the Virginia workplace readiness skills assessment.
In response to a number of requests for clarification related to this requirement which becomes effective with the graduating class of 2017, the Division of Policy and Communications in conjunction with the Division of Instruction has prepared a list of frequently asked questions and answers (Attachment A-This is a PDF document.), which are available on the Virginia Department of Education’s website. This information will be provided to CTE administrators, directors of Guidance and School Counseling, and directors of Special Education and Student Services.
If you have additional questions related to graduation requirements, please contact the Office of Policy by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone at (804) 225-2092.
If you have questions related to CTE programs and Virginia’s Board-approved industry credentials, please contact the Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education by email at email@example.com or by telephone at (804) 225-2052.