Superintendent’s Memo #017-16

State seal, Commonwealth of Virginia

Department of Education

January 29, 2016

TO:  Division Superintendents

FROM:  Steven R. Staples, Superintendent of Public Instruction

SUBJECT: Review of the English Standards of Learning: Seeking Input from the School Community

At the January 28, 2016, Board of Education meeting, the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) was authorized to proceed with the English Standards of Learning review process.  It is anticipated that the review will be completed by January 2017.

An important part of this review process for the English Standards of Learning is the solicitation of comments from teachers, administrators, curriculum supervisors, English educators, English education organizations, and other members of the public. Please inform personnel in your school division and other stakeholders that they may review and comment on the current standards at the English Standards of Learning Review Web site. Comments will be received from February 1, 2016 to March 1, 2016.

The VDOE is also seeking individuals who are qualified and available to serve on a committee to review the English Standards of Learning during the summer of 2016. Applicants must be teachers, principals, administrators, content specialists, or others who have expertise with the content areas and the standards.

Individuals who wish to serve on a committee to review the English Standards of Learning must submit an application through the Web-based process, Instruction Committee Application Processing System (ICAPS).  The application will require a professional reference and division approval. Completed applications are due to the VDOE through ICAPS by March 8, 2016. Committee members selected on the basis of expertise, experience, and balanced regional representation will be notified by April 20, 2016.

Selected team members will be assigned to a specific English grade level/band committee and asked to review information related to their committee prior to convening for a four-day committee meeting during the summer of 2016.  Committee meetings will be held July 18-21, 2016 in the Richmond area.

Committee members who are not under contract or who take personal leave with a school division will receive an incentive for their participation, and all committee members may receive recertification points, pending the approval of their school division. The VDOE will cover expenses for mileage, meals, and lodging related to the review process following approved state guidelines.

If you have questions about the English Standards of Learning review, please contact Tracy Fair Robertson, English coordinator, Office of Humanities and Early Childhood, by e-mail at or by telephone at (804) 371-7585.



  1. Schedule for Review of the English Standards of Learning (PDF)