Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Department of Education
State Board of Education
Regulations Establishing Standards for Accrediting Public Schools in Virginia [8 VAC 20 ‑ 131]
Periodic Review of the Standards for Accrediting Public Schools in Virginia
Action 5633
[Withdrawn 11/3/2023]
General Information
Action Summary The Virginia Board of Education (Board) intends to propose several technical and substantive amendments to its Regulations Establishing Standards for Accrediting Public Schools in Virginia (also known as the Standards of Accreditation or SOA). The Standards of Accreditation seek to ensure that an effective educational program is established and maintained in all Virginia public schools and set out the following: expectations for student achievement; graduation requirements; requirements for instructional programs and staffing; standards for school facilities; standards for school and community communications; a system of accreditation; and plans for school improvement. In 2017, the Board finalized its most recent comprehensive review of and update to the Standards of Accreditation. The Board approved a number of substantive revisions to the SOA, including the addition of new and modified school quality indicators to the state accreditation model as well as an increased emphasis on closing achievement gaps and continuous improvement, among others. The update also allowed the Board to incorporate expectations for student achievement as outlined in the Profile of a Virginia graduate and the 5Cs (critical thinking, creative thinking, communication, collaboration, and citizenship). The new Standards of Accreditation became effective in the 2018-2019 school year. Since implementation, the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) has monitored feedback and inquiries from the field as well as convened an internal committee representing various units across the agency to evaluate and address questions and concerns related to the SOA. VDOE staff has identified several changes and areas of improvement necessitating amendments to the regulations. Additionally, in June 2020, the Board established its own Special Committee for the Review of the Standards of Accreditation tasked with exploring the positive, negative, and unintended consequences of the new accreditation model. As a result of stakeholder feedback, VDOE staff recommendations, and the Committee’s early findings, the Board is initiating regulatory action for the purpose of: (1) providing clarifying technical edits; (2) incorporating items unaddressed during the comprehensive update; and (3) correcting for any negative or unintended consequences of the new accreditation model where prudent.
Chapters Affected Only affects this chapter.
Executive Branch Review This action will go through the normal Executive Branch Review process.
RIS Project Yes  [006549]
New Periodic Review This action will be used to conduct a new periodic review.
Stages associated with this regulatory action.
Stage ID Stage Type Status
9105 NOIRA Stage withdrawn on 11/03/2023 after the comment period had ended.
Contact Information
Name / Title: Jim Chapman  / Regulatory and Legal Coordinator
Address: James Monroe Bldg., 25th Floor
101 N. 14th St.
Richmond, VA 23219
Email Address:
Phone: (804)225-2540    FAX: ()-    TDD: ()-