WVEA seeks to keep you apprised of policies the West Virginia Board of Education has on public comment. Your ability to provide the students in your classroom with the best education possible is impacted by the policies passed by the West Virginia Board of Education. We urge you to read the synopsis of proposed policy revisions listed below and respond to the WVDE with your comments.
The following policies will remain on public comment until 4 p.m. on August 14, 2017:
Policy 5100: Approval of Educator Preparation Programs
The preparation of educators eligible for licensure to work in the public schools of West Virginia is critical to the success of all students. Additionally, this policy, which guides the institutions of higher education in the creation and revision of preparation programs, should always reflect the most updated assessments available. The preparation of educators is a system that operates in a cycle of continuous improvement, thus the requirements for preparation programs change and improve frequently, assessments to measure candidate knowledge change, and the manner by which candidate competency is assessed is ever evolving. As revised, WVBE Policy 5100 will incorporate changes to special education program requirements regarding literacy and mathematics, clarify language in the definitions section, and provide corrections to code and policy references.
It is recommended that WVBE Policy 5100 be amended by:
• 126.114-5. Definitions. Adding definition for clinical experiences to the “field-based experiences” definition; clarifying the difference between field-based experiences and clinical experiences; providing language clarification regarding approved alternative educator preparation and correcting the numerical references to code and policy sections.
• 126.114-6. Professional Educator Preparation Program Requirements: Teacher
Revising requirements for special education programs to include reading/literacy as well as basic mathematics preparation for special education candidates; clarifying and updating the references to the required tests for licensure and the educator preparation provider’s choices for selecting a teacher performance assessment.
• 126.114-10. Additional Program Requirements.
Clarifying language regarding core “subject area” content in program requirements for special education and for content test as a requirement for clinical experience. Revised language to remove some elements no longer required by the retracted higher education federal regulations.
• 126.114-Appendix D. Programmatic Levels and Specializations recognized on the Professional License
Clarifying language for mathematics 5-adult endorsement (adding the word “comprehensive” and removing the grade levels 5-9)
• 126.114-14. Annual Report and Performance. Revision critical for identifying EPPs that are “low-performing” or “at-risk.”
• 126.114-Appendix E. Approved Standards for Program Development and for Completion of West Virginia Approved Programs leading to West Virginia Licensure
Clarifying language for mathematics 5-Adult endorsement (adding the wording “comprehensive”)
These revisions to Policy 5100 enable institutions of higher education, who prepare educators to be eligible for licensure to work in the public schools of West Virginia, to meet the needs of all students as a part of the cycle of continuous improvement. Revisions to policy are necessary as processes evolve in the cycle of high quality educator improvement. Changes are also necessitated as assessments change that measure candidate knowledge and the manner by which to assess candidate competency changes.
Policy 5202: Minimum Requirements for the Licensure of Professional/Paraprofessional Personnel and Advanced Salary Classifications
West Virginia Board of Education Policy 5202 establishes the requirements regarding licensure of educators to work in the public schools of West Virginia is critical to the success of all students in the 21st Century. As changes occur in education, certification and licensure policy must be revised to meet the needs of this 21st Century education system. As continuous revision occurs, WVBE Policy 5202 reflects many of these changes.
It is recommended that WVBE Policy 5202 be amended by:
• 126.136-4. Definitions. Clarified language that states that an individual enrolled in an in-state or out-of-state institution teacher preparation program must have a Clinical Experience Permit and clarified the exceptions to individuals currently possessing a license that do not need to possess a Clinical Experience Permit. Minor code reference changes were corrected for erroneous references, the word Temporary Professional or Student Support Certificate was changed to reflect the change to a Provisional Professional Teaching or Student Support Certificate. Definition of a Provisional Professional Teaching Certificate was amended to reflect changes being made for eligibility for a Professional Teaching Certificate. Finally, the definition of Statement of Eligibility was changed to include that the certificate cannot be expired for more than five years.
• 126.136-5. Categories of Licenses. Removed the Temporary Teaching Certificate Category as it is now being called a Provisional Teaching or Student Support Certificate. The Temporary Career and Technical Education Certificate includes language that the individual must have been offered employment to for the certificate to be issued. The Adult License and the Adult Permit category was changed to reflect that the permits would be required only when instructing adults in endorsements listed in the West Virginia Career and Technical Education Endorsement and Testing Manual on the WVDE website. The definition of the Authorization category was changed to reflect that it would be issued if the specialization does not exist on the Professional or Career and Technical Education Certificate. A definition was added for the Provisional Professional or Teaching or Student Support Certificate.
• 126-136-10. Licenses for Professional Educators. Added and clarified the eligibility requirements for an individual to hold a Provisional Professional Teaching Certificate, removed language that allowed individuals applying for licensure from an out-of-state institution to receive a Temporary Teaching Certificate if they have not completed the required PRAXIS Exams. Language was added for the allowance of a score of 1240 on the new SAT Combined Evidence-Based Reading and Writing and Math effective May 2016 so that the applicant meeting this requirement would not need to take the Pre-Professional Test (CASE). In addition, there was language clarified about requirement for an individual to receive a permanent teaching certificate without a Master’s Degree and the coursework required. An exception was added to allow a school nurse with an expired student support certificate to receive a one-year authorization upon offer of employment and verification from the employing agency to meet the requirement to renew their School Nurse Student Support Certificate. Language was also added to add requirements to convert from a Provisional Professional Certificate to an initial Professional Certificate. Language was clarified about receiving the recommendation of the employing county superintendent or completion of a recommendation from the most recent education supervisor if it does not exceed one year. Included language that allows an individual who meets all other eligibility requirements for a permanent administrator license to use the minimum age of 60 as one of the criteria can receive a Permanent Administrative Certificate. Added an exception to issue an Initial License to Speech Language Pathologists who have met licensure requirements through another state’s issuing agency or licensure, Policy was added to allow Speech Language Pathologists without a license issued from the educator’s license to practice in a public school setting. Language was added and clarified about the process to convert a Statement of Eligibility to an Initial Provisional Professional Teaching Certificate. Career and Technical Education Certificates were clarified that to receive the Temporary Teaching Certificate, an applicant must have been offered employment. Career and Technical Education renewal of the certificate must hold a minimum of a Master’s Degree and a minimum of a salary classification (professional or vocational) of a Master’s plus-30. Also, language was added that Industry-Recognized credentials should always be valid and not allowed to expire.
• 126-136-11. Permits Issued to Professional Educators. Clarified several areas of language in the Career and Technical Education Permits that were repetitive and unnecessary. A requirement was added for Speech Language Pathologists who are ASHA-certified, but did not complete the traditional route to certification to be issued an Initial Student Support Certificate. An exception was added for requirements for a School Nurse and Substitute Permits allowing them to complete training specifically related to School Nurse. Requirements were added for an individual to receive an endorsement in Elementary Education on a Long-Term Substitute Permit. A requirement was added for the renewal of the Adult Permit endorsements for Career and Technical Education. The Initial Temporary Authorization from Options Pathways was removed and it is now moved to an Advanced Credential. Language was also added for clarification of the authorization and renewal of Child Nutrition Director Requirements and validity. Language was clarified so that a county superintendent does not sign for a collaborative employee and the collaborative director does not sign for the county superintendent.
• 126-136-12. Early Childhood Classroom Assistant Teacher Authorization and Paraprofessional Certification. Language was added that part of the coursework for an ECCAT Assistant Teacher II Permanent Authorization must submit verification of completion of semester hours for the Apprenticeship for Child Development Specialists and an official certificate issued by the U.S. Department of Labor. Clarification was made that the signatory on the application has to be directly related to the employment of the applicant so that a county superintendent does not sign for a collaborative employee or vice versa. Language was added that allows aides employed in other capacities to obtain certification as an ECCAT. Language was clarified regarding what constitutes WVDE-approved coursework for authorizations, and removed the one-year experience criteria to allow aides in other capacities to qualify for permanent ECCAT status.
• 126-136-15. Alternate Routes to Certification. Clarified language of converting an Alternative Teaching Certificate to an Initial Provisional Professional Teaching Certificate.
• 126-136-16. Out-of-State Applicants. Added an exception for Speech Language Pathologists who are licensed in a state where that state’s Department of Education no longer issues a license so that they may be licensed in West Virginia due to a critical need.
• 126-136-18. Appropriate Assignments According to Licensure. Clarified language for assignment of a Speech Language Pathologist to Pre-K-Adult as we do not offer a Birth-Adult endorsement. The assignment of School Nutrition Director does not have a permanent authorization. Added language that an individual holding the School Nurse Long-Term Sub Permit cannot substitute in any other area unless the criteria from 11.7.c.1 were satisfied.
• 126-136-20. Athletic and Limited Football Trainer. Added occupational therapists as a credential that can be used to obtain a Limited Football Trainer Authorization as per WVBE Policy 5112.
• 126-136-21. Additional Endorsement(s) for Existing License. Removed the exception of Agricultural Education on a Career and Technical Education Certificate as it pertained to a Professional Teaching Certificate.
• 126-136-22. Salary Classifications for Educators. Deleted unnecessary, ambiguous information.
• 126-136-23. Fee Reimbursements and Salary Supplements. Removed the reimbursement for moving expenses as the Code section for the allowance has expired. In addition, language was added and clarified requirements and reimbursements for the national Board for Professional Teaching Standards.
• 126-136-24. Advanced Credentials. Added language to make Option Pathways endorsement an advanced credential. Language was also added to reflect an Advanced Credential for Pet Grooming.
• Appendix A. Made changes to General Math Endorsement and Math Comprehensive Endorsement label and grade endorsement.
These revisions to Policy 5202 assure appropriate certification of educators for licensure to work in the public schools of West Virginia in order to meet the needs of all students in the 21st century, as part of the cycle of continuous improvement. The flexibility afforded to districts in attracting and retaining highly effective educators is evidenced in policy revision.
Policy 4110: Student Attendance
The Legislature amended W.Va. Code 18-8-4 by House Bill 2702. This legislation necessitates change to Policy 4110. Attendance directors or their assistants are no longer required to send home a letter to the parents/guardians of students who have accumulated three unexcused absences. The Legislation also updates the requirements of the excused absence for personal illness or injury of the student’s parent, guardian, custodian, or family member to give the principal discretion to request documentation from a medical, osteopathic, or chiropractic physician, physician’s assistant, or nurse practitioner as to why the student’s absence was necessitated by the family member’s illness or injury. Extra-curricular activities will be added to the list of excused absences since extra-curricular and curricular activities share an absence code. Regarding the required meeting between the school and the parent/guardian, in the event of five unexcused absences, wording reflects that the conference will take place with the “principal, administrative head or other chief administrator” instead of “with the principal or other designated representative of the school.” New legislation also requires that documentation relating to absences shall be provided to the school not later than three instructional days after the first day the student returns to school. Regarding the requirement of the attendance director to make complaint in the instance of 10 unexcused absences, wording is changed from “shall make complaint” to “may make complaint.” Districts will no longer be required to submit their local attendance policy to WVDE for approval, but will post them on the county school district’s website to be readily available to the public. ESEA Policy Section 1111(g)(1) requires schools to improve the conditions for learning by reducing the overuse of discipline practices that remove students from the classroom. Addressing the allowable deductions may encourage schools to explore alternatives to removing students. Based on House Bill 2702, the new language is effective as of July 1, 2017.
Revisions to Policy 4110 are being recommended so that it will align with changes to 18-8-4 of the Code of West Virginia as a result of the passage of House Bill 2702. A revision to the allowable deductions for schools to exclude out-of-school suspension days, other than safe schools violations, is proposed as a means of addressing ESEA Section 1111(g)(1).
The proposed revision would remove the requirement to send a letter for all students who have three total unexcused absences. This would be a savings of both time and finances to attendance directors and districts. It would also require parents and students to submit documentation relating to absences within a reasonable amount of time. This may decrease the number of truant students. The proposed revisions will also give school principals flexibility to request additional documentation in deciding whether a student’s absence was necessary due to the illness or injury of a family member. The legislation requires the principal or other administrative head meet with students and parents/guardians relating to five total unexcused absences. The proposal to remove those suspensions not resulting from safe schools violations from the allowable deductions for schools should encourage schools to reduce the overuse of discipline practices that remove students from the classroom.
If you have questions regarding any of the WVBE's policies, contact Davin White, WVEA Communications and Instructional Issues Specialist, by phone at 1.800.642.8261 ext. 116 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org