REGULATIONS GOVERNING THE APPROVAL OF CORRESPONDENCE COURSES FOR HOME INSTRUCTION (REPEALED)
Definitions. (Repealed.) The following words or terms, when used in this chapter,
shall have the following meanings, unless the context clearly indicates
otherwise: "Board" means the Virginia Board of Education. "Correspondence school" means a school,
organization, or other entity, no matter how titled, that teaches nonresident
students by mailing them lessons and exercises which, upon completion, are
returned to the school for grading. The lessons or exercises may also be
transmitted and graded through electronic means. "Course" means presentation of an orderly
sequence of material dealing with an individual subject area such as
mathematics, biology, etc. "Department" means the Department of Education. "Home instruction" means the teaching of a child
or children in the home as an alternative to compulsory attendance as defined
in § 22.1-254 of the Code of Virginia. "School" means a correspondence school.
Schools seeking approval. (Repealed.) Schools seeking approval of the academic courses offered
shall submit the following: 1. A catalog or other documents containing the following
information: a. A statement of ownership or control of the institution; b. Descriptions of courses offered by the institution; c. A description of the evaluative method used; and d. A schedule of tuition and fees. 2. Verification of approval or exemption from regulation
from the appropriate government agency in its state of domicile. 3. Such additional information as the board or department
may deem necessary.
Approval renewal. (Repealed.) Approval of the academic courses shall be renewed annually
on or before August 1, provided the school verifies that it continues to meet the
requirements of 8VAC20-60-50. Forms for this purpose shall be provided by the
Review. (Repealed.) Each school meeting the criteria listed in 8VAC20-60-50 is
required to submit the material in 8VAC20-60-20 for review every five years
concurrent with the renewal affidavit.
Approval criteria. (Repealed.) Academic courses offered by schools submitting the
information required by 8VAC20-60-20 of this chapter shall be approved if the
following criteria have been met: 1. The school is, in fact, a correspondence school as
defined in this chapter; 2. The courses offered are not in conflict with state or
federal laws or regulations; 3. The school evaluates the students' work on a periodic
basis and maintains a permanent record of that work.
Disclaimer. (Repealed.) Board of Education's approval of correspondence courses is
not an endorsement of the program as a substitute for public school programs
nor is it an endorsement of the educational or operational philosophy of the school.
Additionally, the approval of courses is not intended as an endorsement of the
quality of the courses nor is it a conclusion that they are appropriate to meet
the educational needs of the student or the assessment required by § 22.1-254.1
of the Code of Virginia. It is manifest that parents who choose to educate their
children at home through a correspondence course are directly responsible for
the educational progress of their children and the adequacy of instruction. The
General Assembly has provided a mechanism to ensure that a child is receiving
adequate instruction at home by requiring annual competency testing or
evaluation. This testing program or evaluation is a measure of educational
adequacy and the determining factor in the decision regarding the continuation
of home study. The approval of the board does not guarantee that a school
has a refund policy for uncompleted courses. The Board of Education assumes no
liability for damages or financial loss to parents using any course to meet
Option iii of § 22.1-254.1 of the Code of Virginia relating to home
Listing of approved schools. (Repealed.) The department shall maintain a list of schools whose
courses are approved under the provisions of this chapter for dissemination to
the public upon request.
Restrictions. (Repealed.) No school whose courses are approved for home instruction
shall advertise in any way that the courses have the endorsement,
recommendation, accreditation, recognition, or any other similar term, of the board,
the department, or the Commonwealth of Virginia.
Revocation or suspension of approval. (Repealed.) Approval of courses offered by a school may be revoked or
suspended for cause by action of the board; such action shall be reported and preserved
in writing and shall not take place prior to a hearing as provided for in §XVII
of Regulations Governing Operation of Proprietary Schools and Issuing of Agent
Transmitting documents and other materials.
(Repealed.) The mailing of applications, forms, letters, or other
papers shall not constitute receipt of the same by the department unless sent by
registered or certified mail, return receipt requested. Such materials should
be sent to the Associate Director of Proprietary School Service, Department of
Education, P.O. Box 6-Q, Richmond, VA 23216. DOCUMENTS INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE (8VAC20-60) Regulations Governing the Operation of Proprietary Schools,
and Issuing of Agent Permits, revised 1994.
The following words or terms when used in this chapter shall have the following meanings unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:
"Board" means the Virginia Board of Education.
"Correspondence school" means a school, organization, or other entity, no matter how titled, that teaches students by mailing them lessons and exercises that upon completion are returned to the school for grading. Such lessons or exercises also may be transmitted and graded by electronic means.
"Course" means the presentation of an orderly sequence of material dealing with an individual subject area, such as driver education.
"Department" means the Virginia Department of Education.
"Home instruction" means the teaching of a child or children by a teaching parent in the home as an alternative to meeting the requirements of compulsory attendance as defined in § 22.1-254 of the Code of Virginia and as a means of complying with § 22.1-254.1 of the Code of Virginia.
"Parent" means any parent, guardian, legal guardian, or other person having control or charge of a child as specified in § 22.1-1 of the Code of Virginia.
"School" means a correspondence school for driver education programs.
8VAC20-340-40. Approval of correspondence courses for driver education.
A. Required submissions. Schools seeking approval to offer the classroom portion of a driver education program to school-age children through a correspondence program or course in Virginia shall submit the following:
1. A signed and completed copy of the department's affidavit form.
2. A catalog or other documents containing the following information:
a. A statement of ownership or control of the institution;
b. Descriptions of the driver education courses offered by the institution;
c. A description of the method used to evaluate the students' work;
d. A schedule of tuition and fees, including the school's refund policies; and
e. Copies of all application forms and enrollment agreements used by the school.
3. Verification of approval or exemption from regular oversight from the appropriate state or local government agency in the school's state of domicile.
4. Information regarding the school's accreditation status.
5. The name and publisher of the textbook required.
6. An estimate of the minimum amount of time (in hours) required to complete the course.
7. Such additional information as the board or department may deem necessary.
B. All schools must evaluate the students' work at regular intervals specified by the department and maintain a permanent record of the work.
C. Each school meeting the criteria listed in this section is required to submit the required materials for review every year concurrent with the renewal affidavit.
D. Approval criteria. Driver education courses offered by
schools submitting the materials required by this section shall be
if when ] the following
criteria have been met:
1. The school is, in fact, a correspondence school as defined in 8VAC20-340-5;
2. The courses offered are consistent with state or federal laws or regulations;
3. The school evaluates the students' progress at regular intervals specified by the department and maintains a permanent record of that work; and
4. The content of each course is accurate [
and ] rigorous [ , ] and meets the
requirements of the Curriculum and Administrative Guide for Driver Education in
Virginia, 2010 edition, which includes the Driver Education Standards of
The school must provide evidence that at least two subject matter experts have reviewed and validated the accuracy of online content and textbook materials.
The department will consider an
application complete when it determines that An application shall be
complete when ] all required information has been submitted in the
form required by the department. If the department [ finds,
on behalf of the board, determines ] the application [ to
be ] incomplete, [ the department shall notify ]
the applicant [ will be notified of the
insufficiencies ] in writing within 45 days of receipt of the
incomplete application. [ If the The ] applicant
[ does not resubmit a complete application must submit
the required items to complete the application, to be received by the
department ] within 45 days from the notification [ ,.
If the application is not completed within the 45-day period, ] the
case file for the request for approval as a provider will be closed.
[ Prior At any time prior ] to closure, the
applicant may withdraw the request for approval. The applicant may [ resubmit
a complete submit a new ] application at [ a
later any ] time.
F. Approval process. After a review of the
complete application, the department will notify the applicant of its decision
regarding approval. If the application is approved, the department will issue a
letter of approval with terms of the approval. If the department denies or
revokes the approval for good cause, the department will issue a letter stating
the reasons for revocation and denial, including information regarding the
applicant's right to appeal this decision. G. Appeal process for denial or revocation. 1. Fact-finding conference: notification, appearance, and
conduct. a. Unless emergency circumstances exist that require
immediate action, no application shall be denied, suspended, or revoked except
upon notice stating the proposed basis for such action and the time and place
for a fact-finding conference. b. If a basis exists for a refusal to approve or a
suspension or a revocation of the department's approval, the department shall
notify, via certified or hand-delivered mail, the interested parties at the
address of record maintained by the department. c. Notification shall include the basis for the proposed
action and any information in the possession of the department that can be
relied upon in making an adverse decision. d. The fact-finding conference shall afford the interested
party the opportunity to present written and oral information to the department
that may have a bearing on the proposed action at a fact-finding conference.
Such information should include a brief, written statement of errors the party
believes were made in the department's decision. e. If no withdrawal occurs, a fact-finding conference
shall be scheduled at the earliest mutually agreeable date, but no later than
60 days from the date of the notification. A school wishing to waive its right
to a conference to proceed directly to a formal hearing shall notify the
department of such at least 14 days before the scheduled conference. f. The department may rely on public data, documents, or
information in making its decision if all parties are given advance notice of
the department's intent to rely on such data. g. If, after consideration of information presented
during an informal fact-finding conference, a basis for adverse action still
exists, the department shall send to the interested parties a report on the
fact-finding conference within 90 days of the conference, via certified or
hand-delivered mail, that shall include the decision, a brief and general
description of the factual or procedural basis for the decision, and the right
to a formal hearing. h. Parties may enter into a consent agreement to settle
the issues at any time prior to, during, or subsequent to an informal
fact-finding conference. 2. Hearing: notification, appearance, and conduct. a. If an interested party intends to request a formal
hearing, it shall notify the department within 30 days of receipt of a report
on the fact-finding conference. b. Parties shall be given reasonable notice of the (i)
time, place, and nature of the hearing; (ii) basic law under which the
department contemplates its possible exercise of authority; and (iii) matters
of fact and law asserted or questioned by the department. c. If an interested party or representative fails to
appear at a hearing, the hearing officer may proceed in the party's or representative's
absence and make a recommendation. d. Oral and written arguments may be submitted to and
limited by the hearing officer. Oral arguments shall be recorded in an
appropriate manner. e. The burden of proof at such hearings shall be on the
party seeking to reverse the decision of the department. 3. Hearing location. Hearings before a hearing officer
shall be held, insofar as practical, in the county or city in which the school
is located. Hearing officers may conduct hearings at locations convenient to
the greatest number of persons or by telephone conference, videoconference, or
similar technology in order to expedite the hearing process. No hearing shall
be located outside of the Commonwealth of Virginia unless it is held by
electronic means as specified in the Code of Virginia. 4. Hearing decisions. a. Recommendations of the hearing officer shall be a
part of the record and shall include a written statement of the hearing
officer's findings of fact and recommendations as well as the reasons or basis
for the recommendations. Recommendations shall be based upon all the material
issues of fact, law, or discretion presented on the record. b. The Superintendent of Public Instruction shall review
the recommendation of the hearing officer and render a decision on the
recommendation within 30 days of receipt. The decision shall cite the
appropriate rule, relief, or denial thereof as to each issue. c. The Superintendent of Public Instruction's decision
regarding the school's approval shall be delivered to the concerned parties
within five days of the decision and include a brief statement of the
conclusions, the basis of the conclusions, the basic law upon which the
department relies, and the recommendation of the hearing officer. 5. Agency representation. The Superintendent of Public
Instruction's designee may represent the department in an informal conference
or at a hearing.
F. Approval, denial, and revocation.
1. The department, on behalf of the board, shall notify applicants in writing when an application is approved.
2. Applications that do not meet the criteria required by subsections A, B, and D of this section shall be denied. The department shall notify applicants in writing of the denial, stating the reasons the application was denied and including the applicant's right to request the board to reconsider the application, pursuant to subsection G of this section.
3. An approved application may be revoked for good cause, which includes, but is not limited to, the conviction of the applicant, or any employee thereof, of (i) any felony or (ii) any offense involving the sexual molestation, physical or sexual abuse, or rape of a child.
G. Reconsideration by the Board of Education when an application is denied or when approval is revoked. A school whose application has been denied or whose approval has been revoked for good cause may request reconsideration by letter to the board. The letter of request shall include the reasons that the school believes the denial or revocation was inappropriate and shall document how it has corrected any insufficiency identified in the letter of denial or revocation. The board's decision on reconsideration shall be final on that application; however, a denial of reconsideration shall not prevent the school from submitting a new application at a later time. ]
H. Determination of continued compliance. Approval of the academic courses shall be renewed annually on or before August 1, provided that the school verifies that it continues to meet the requirements of this section. Forms for this purpose shall be provided by the department.
I. Disclaimer. The Board of Education's approval of a correspondence course is not an endorsement of the program as a substitute for public school programs nor is it an endorsement of the educational or operational philosophy of the school. Additionally, the approval of courses is not intended as an endorsement of the quality of the courses nor is it a conclusion that these courses meet the educational needs of the student or the assessment required by § 22.1-254.1 of the Code of Virginia.
Parents who choose to educate their children at home through a driver education correspondence course are directly responsible for the educational progress of their children and the adequacy of instruction. The board assumes no liability for damages or financial loss to parents using any of the approved driver education correspondence courses.
J. Restrictions. No school whose courses are approved as a driver education program shall advertise in any way that the courses have the endorsement, recommendation, accreditation, or recognition, or any other similar term, of the board, the department, or the Commonwealth of Virginia.
K. Transmitting the affidavit, documents, and other materials. The affidavit, related letters, forms, and other required application materials must be submitted to the Division of Instruction at the Virginia Department of Education by email to the Driver Education Specialist, whose contact information may be found at http://www.doe.virginia.gov/directories/index.shtml#vdoe.
DOCUMENTS INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE (8VAC20-340)
Curriculum Guide of Driver Education in Virginia. ]
Curriculum and Administrative Guide for Driver Education in
Virginia, 2010 Edition (includes Driver Education Standards of Learning,
revised January 2008), Virginia Department of Education [