West Virginia’s Pre-K system is off to a good start. A recent study by the Edward Zigler Center for Child Development and Social Policy at Yale University cited West Virginia as having the most educated preschool teachers in the country. The study revealed that 66 percent of West Virginia’s preschool teachers hold a master’s degree. The research also showed that the most effective preschool programs have teachers with bachelor’s or master’s degrees.
As the state’s Pre-k System expands and improves, it has become necessary to revise the policy so it is aligned with the state’s Content Standards and Objectives (CSO).
One major revision includes the replacement of day care licensing standards with health and safety standards. As part of the health and safety standards, meals must be provided if a pre-k classroom is in operation for more than four hours; all children who enter a program must have age appropriate immunizations; classroom size will be limited to no more than 20 children; and all pre-k classrooms not administered by the West Virginia Department of Education (WVDE) or Head Start, but instead contracted with the county schools system, must be licensed through the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources (WVDHHR) Day Care Licensing.
Other revisions include a more defined composition of the review team to include three representatives from the WVDE, three from WVDHHR and three from Head Start. This review team will evaluate the quality and content of the county plans. Local Education Agencies (LEA) will have direct oversight for the public school classrooms in their counties; however, the West Virginia Board of Education and the Secretary for the WVDHHR will maintain state oversight.
Policy 2525 will remain on public comment for 30 days. School administrators and parents are encouraged to review the document and make suggestions on improving the policy. You can find the policies by logging onto http://wvde.state.wv.us/policies/
The West Virginia Board of Education is also seeking comments on Policy 2320 - A Process for Improving Education – Performance Based Accreditation System. Policy 2320 is being revised to reflect the No Child Left Behind State Accountability Plan as components of the plan become effective. Proposed revisions to Policy 2320 also include the criteria for Exemplary School Accreditation status and minor editorial revisions for clarity.
Changes to the West Virginia Secondary School Activities Commission Rules, Series 2 – Athletics, Provision Governing Eligibility and Series 3 - Provisions Governing Contests have also been placed on public comment. The majority of public and most private schools in West Virginia belong to the West Virginia Secondary School Activities Commission. Each year, the principals of member schools submit revisions to the rules and regulations. The proposals are presented and voted upon at the annual Board of Control meeting and are then submitted to the West Virginia Board of Education for review and approval. The following amendments are proposed:
1)to bring cheerleading in line with other team sports; 2)to allow athletic directors to be admitted to games; 3)to allow administrators and coaches to attend events to supervise students; and 4)to make the residence-transfer rule educationally sound.
Policy 2320 and affected portions of WVSSAC Series 2 and 3 will remain on public comment for 30 days. School administrators and parents are encouraged to review the document and make suggestions on improving the policy. You can find the policies by logging onto http://wvde.state.wv.us/policies/