Superintendent’s Memo No. 231-14

State seal, Commonwealth of Virginia

Department of Education

August 22, 2014

TO:  Division Superintendents

FROM:  Steven R. Staples, Superintendent of Public Instruction

SUBJECT:  WIDA Academy: Creating Language-Focused College- and Career- Ready Units of Study for English Language Learners

As part of the Virginia Department of Education’s ongoing effort to ensure compliance with Section 3111(b)(2) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA), a WIDA (World-Class Instructional Design and Assessment) Academy titled  Creating Language-Focused College- and Career-Ready Units of Study for English Language Learners will be held at the following site on the specified dates below:

Date and Time
Academy Location and Lodging Information

Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday
September 30 - October 2, 2014

8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Registration begins at 7:30 a.m.

The Hotel Roanoke & Conference Center
110 Shenandoah Avenue
Roanoke, Virginia 24016
(540) 985-5900

In school teams, participants will work on integrating Standards of Learning (SOL) and English Language Development (ELD) Standards to develop a custom design for the instruction and assessment of English Language Learners (ELLs).  Teams will create instructional materials to assist in the implementation of the standards within their respective school divisions.

It is recommended that a division team comprised of ESL and content practitioners and/or administrators attend the Academy.  Additional information including an online registration link and lodging details can be found at the following link:  The Office of Continuing and Professional Education at Virginia Tech will manage online registration. The deadline for registration is Monday, September 22, 2014.

Lodging Costs:  A limited block of hotel rooms for those outside of a fifty mile radius of the training location will be paid by the Department.  The room cost will be master-billed to the Department upon departure.  Room reservations must be made by Friday, September 5, 2014.  It is the responsibility of attendees to make their own reservations.  To reserve a room, call The Hotel Roanoke & Conference Center and reference “Virginia Department of Education, WIDA Academy.”

Authorized Expenses:  Evening meals, parking, and travel costs are the responsibility of attendees; however, these expenses are authorized activities and may be charged to local Title I, Part A; Title I, Part C; Title II, Part A; or Title III, Part A, budgets.  Materials, breakfast, and lunch will be provided.

Cancellation:  If participants need to cancel their hotel reservations, please contact the hotel directly, as well as Christy Wallace, the Virginia Tech registrar, no later than Monday, September 22, 2014, at (540) 231-6735 or (540) 231-5182, or

For questions, please contact Judy Radford, ESL coordinator, at or (804)786-1692.