VASCD Policy Team

VASCD actively promotes public policy that reflects best educational practice and addresses the needs of modern learners.

If you would like to be a member of our Policy Team, there are opportunities for you! Contact Chris Jones at

If you would like to receive periodic updates related to Virginia Board of Education and legislative action related to the priorities below, sign up for our Policy Updates email list here.

Advocacy Resources

VASCD’s Policy Priorities: Elevating Teaching, Deepening Learning

VASCD promotes decisions and policies that reflect “autonomy with integrity”, our belief in the abilities of educators to make sound decisions regarding teaching and learning. Read about autonomy with integrity- what it is and why it matters- here.

VASCD’s Policy Priorities guide our advocacy work with policymakers at the Virginia Board of Education and in the General Assembly. We also work to ensure these priorities are reflected in our work with educators and our partnerships with other organizations.

For 2022- 23 our priorities are:

Outstanding Teachers for Virginia’s Students

We must elevate the profession and champion autonomy with integrity from policy to the practitioner. Recruiting and retaining the very best educators requires coordinated efforts among policymakers and the education community. Although we appreciate the recent attention to Virginia’s teacher shortage, we urge decision-makers to align their actions with evidence regarding the factors that actually influence educators’ decisions to enter, stay, and grow in their positions.

  • Teachers deserve compensation that allows them to support themselves and their families while living in the communities in which they work. Changes in VRS benefits have removed a significant incentive to accept the low salary that teaching offers in Virginia.
  • An environment in which teachers have needed flexibility to teach and assess the Standards of Learning in innovative and creative ways is a factor in teacher recruitment and retention by enhancing the design of teaching and learning, improving student learning outcomes, and increasing teacher agency and autonomy.
  • Student needs vary widely and change constantly. Educators need greater flexibility to make decisions in the interests of students while aligning their teaching with the Standards of Learning and must be trusted as assessors of student learning. Additionally, resources to implement interventions for students are needed.

Modernizing Virginia’s Assessment System

Virginia’s student assessment system should support and align with today’s student learning goals. Virginia’s Profile of a Graduate raises expectations for the student learning by requiring the demonstration of both academic knowledge and a broader range of skills necessary for success in the workplace and community. To measure these outcomes, a comprehensive and aligned assessment and accountability system are essential and should include multiple measures of proficiency, growth, and performance through assessments that incorporate flexibility with respect to time and space.

  • Virginia’s assessment system should be revised to include a balance of achievement, performance, and growth measures over the course of students’ K-12 experience, reflecting an emphasis on future-ready skills.
  • The statewide assessment system should yield adequate data for accountability and to inform teaching and learning without supplanting excessive instructional time, specifically limiting testing in particular grades and subjects.
  • While maintaining validity and reliability, the system should be modernized to incorporate methodologies such as on-demand testing and interdisciplinary assessments.

Personalizing Professional Learning Opportunities for Educators

Educators need relevant, competency-based professional learning opportunities. Throughout the commonwealth, there is an increased emphasis on students’ actual demonstration of learning in real-world contexts. In the same way, teachers should be able to learn in ways that are immediately relevant to their jobs and able to be demonstrated in the ways they plan, deliver, and assess learning for their students.

  • Competency-based models such as micro-credentialing should be valued as pathways to recertification.
  • Educators’ professional learning plans should address school-wide priorities while accommodating educators’ individual needs and choices.

PDF Brochure

Read our 2023 General Assembly Priorities HERE