October 28, 2016

TO:  Division Superintendents

FROM:  Steven R. Staples, Superintendent of Public Instruction

SUBJECT: W!SE Financial Literacy Certification

The Working in Support of Education (W!SE) financial literacy credential is closely aligned to the required Economics and Personal Finance (EPF) course (6120) for all students.  Therefore, students who have successfully completed the EPF course in a previous semester or previous year but have not passed an industry certification examination to satisfy the Standard Diploma graduation requirement may take the W!SE test. Upon passing the W!SE test, these students will have met two graduation requirements—earned one standard unit of credit for EPF and earned the career and technical education industry credential for the Standard Diploma (8VAC20-131-50.B.This link takes you out of the Virginia Department of Education website Note 8).

As outlined in the W!SE Financial Literacy Certification Test Proctoring Guidelines (Attachment A), students may have three attempts per semester to pass the W!SE test.  Students who fail the W!SE test on their first attempt may retake it following remediation up to two additional times per semester.  The student may also take the W!SE test following instruction during a summer school semester and is entitled to two retakes, if necessary, during that summer semester. Schools must contact Working in Support of Education to schedule a retake session.  The Proctoring Guidelines are sent to schools after they register to test and approximately one month before the testing window opens. 

Students with disabilities must receive the testing accommodations specified in their Individualized Educational Program (IEP) or Section 504 Accommodation Plans when they take the test. These students with special needs may use certain recording or playback devices only if this accommodation is specifically required as a provision of the student's IEP or Section 504 Accommodation Plan.  Students who need the test to be read to them may use the Text-to-Speech Audio feature on the Certification Test or may have, upon request, access to the online or paper-based fixed form Certification Test.  To accommodate students with extra time allowances, the timer clock on the online W!SE test is not turned on.  Therefore, it is the responsibility of the proctor to keep time.  Specific instructions are given in the Proctoring Guidelines document.

If you have questions about the W!SE test, please contact David Anderson at danderson@wise-ny.org.

If you have questions about the Career and Technical Education Credential requirement for students pursuing the Standard Diploma, please contact the Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education at cte@doe.virginia.gov or by telephone at (804) 225-2051. 



  1. W!SE Financial Literacy Certification (PDF)