Agencies | Governor
Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Department of Education
State Board of Education
Regulations Governing the Review and Approval of Education Programs in Virginia [8 VAC 20 ‑ 542]
Action Comprehensive Revision of the Regulations Governing the Review and Approval of Education Programs in
Stage Proposed
Comment Period Ends 10/31/2015
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10/25/15  11:40 am
Commenter: Gabriel A. Reich, Virginia Commonwealth University

The importance of social foundations.

To the VA Board of Education,

I would like to register my support for maintaining language in the regulations for VA schools of education that emphasizes the importance of stand-alone courses in the social foundations of education. It is in classes such as these that students learn to hone their judgment and ethical decision making skills by exploring professional dilemmas and making decisions informed by knowledge of the lives of their students both in and outside of schools, as well as the history of education in this country. To short this opportunity can cause major problems for pre-service teachers. I teach students history/social studies methods. While we may discuss issues that come up in social foundations classes, I would have to curtail their instruction in pedagogical methods if I had to include the teaching of foundations in my courses. The schools of education around this state take their cue from you. What you value ends up guiding decisions about programs, hiring, and budgets at our schools. Maintaining a strong support for the social foundations will directly support our ability to graduate teachers who are ready to be successful in Virginia schools.

Thank you.


Gabriel A. Reich, PhD

Department of Teaching and Learning