The quality of education in Virginia is very good. The location of a particular school can be a determining factor in the selection of one’s housing. Public school zoning is strictly enforced. Each public school has a specific area or zone which you must live within in order for your child to attend that school.
Please check out the schools before you rent a house. All the schools are rated according to performance and results. This information can be found on the city’s public school websites below.
The Virginia Department Of Education website has everything on it regarding public schools (state run) in Virginia whether you are an teacher, parent, student or someone interested in learning more about the department and the commonwealth’s public schools.
Public schools in the US take part in standardised testing every year (SOL tests) the results are then compared from school to school- rather like SAT tests in the UK. This site contains comparitive tables.
There is no uniform as such in most public schools but your children will need a good supply of shorts, T-shirts, sweatshirts, etc., all of which are readily available in the local area.
Scholastic Aptitude Tests (SATs) are important and are taken in Grades 11 and 12. Check if they can be used for application to your national universities. There is a fee involved with writing these tests.
For elementary and middle schools classes usually start at 8:30 or 9:00 a.m. and finish at 3:00 or 3:30 p.m. High schools start around 7:20 a.m. and finish around 2:30 p.m. There are no breaks except lunch break which is usually about half an hour in length. Physical Education is usually included in school hours but sports and gymnastics are afterwards.
Elementary Schools: Provide instruction for students from Kindergarten through grade 5 (approx. ages 5-10). The curriculum at all elementary schools includes: language arts (reading and writing), mathematics, social studies, music, art, physical education, and health. Instruction practices are developed within each school by the school staff. New and innovative ideas are encouraged as an enhancement of the children’s learning experience.
Middle Schools: Serve students in grades 6 through 8 (11-13 years old). Middle school students are required to take: communication skills, mathematics, science, social studies, physical education and choose among elective courses that provide students an opportunity to study special areas of interest. Students also have the option to take a foreign language or to accelerate their program by taking algebra in the 8th grade for high school credit.
High Schools: Grades 9 through 12 (approx. ages 14-18). Most programs are organized on a semester system (fall and spring). Students in these grades earn credits in English, mathematics, laboratory science, social studies, health, safety, physical education and electives. Advanced Placement and Honors courses are also offered.
The International Baccalaureate Program: The IB program/diploma is recognized in many countries around the world. (http://www.ibo.org/ibo/index.cfm) The IB program is run at Princess Anne High School and in Virginia Beach and Granby High school in Norfolk.
College/University: There are many junior colleges, colleges, and universities in the Hampton Roads area. SAT tests are required for entrance to college in the United States as well as the TOEFL English language tests. The local university is www.odu.com . There are other Virginia State Universities, for example, University of Virginia, Virginia Tech, William and Mary and James Madison.
THE COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA STATE GUIDELINES:
A. The following Virginia state guidelines are required for enrolling a student in a Virginia public school:
1. A child must be five years old on or before September 30 of the upcoming school year to enroll in kindergarten.
2. A certified birth certificate is required of any student being admitted for the first time to any public school in Virginia.
3. The student must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian and must submit proof of address (lease agreement and/or gas, electric, or water bills) when registering at a new school.
4. Virginia law requires that a student must present a Social Security number upon enrollment. Virginia Code §22.1‐260 requires that a student present a federal Social Security number within ninety days of enrollment. Parents who are unable or unwilling to present a federal Social Security number may request that the school division provide an alternative identification number. No student will be denied enrollment or services based upon not
providing a Social Security number.
5. No student shall be admitted for the first time to any public kindergarten or elementary school in a school division unless the student furnishes a copy of a comprehensive physical examination from a qualified licensed physician or licensed nurse practitioner, performed no earlier than twelve months prior to the date the student first enters kindergarten or elementary school. When such a physical is performed for first‐time entry to kindergarten, the Virginia Form MCH‐213F is required. This form is also available at all school offices.
6. If transferring from another school, school division, or from out of state, a copy of such an examination must be in the previous school’s record and available upon request. The need for a physical examination does not apply to pupils entering secondary schools, although this report is often very beneficial.
7. Virginia law requires proof of immunizations for all students entering a public school. Month, day, and year of immunizations must be reflected. Kindergartners, entering school for the first time, must have immunizations verified on Virginia Form MCH‐213F .
1. Diphtheria, Tetanus & Pertussis (DTap, DTP) ‐ A minimum of three doses, with at least one dose administered after the child’s fourth birthday.
2. POLIO ‐ A minimum of three doses, with at least one dose administered after the student’s fourth birthday. If four (or more) have been administered before the fourth birthday, no more are required for school entry.
3. MEASLES, MUMPS, RUBELLA (MMR) requirements: Measles (Rubeola) ‐ Two doses of Rubeola vaccine are required for all students enrolled in kindergarten through grade 12. The first dose must have been at age 12 months or older; the second dose no sooner than one month after the first dose.
Mumps and Rubella ‐ A minimum of one dose of each administered at 12 months or older. This is usually administered in combination with Measles (Rubeola) as theMMR vaccine.
4. HEPATITIS B ‐ The series of three vaccines is required for all students born on or after January 1, 1994. The third dose must not have been given before 24 weeks of age.
5. VARICELLA (Chicken Pox) ‐ This is required of all students born on or after January 1, 1997, and must have been administered after 12 months of age, unless the medical history and lab tests are officially documented.
6. Tdap (Booster) ‐ Rising sixth graders and new enrolling 7th, 8th and 9th graders are required to have a booster dose of the Tdap vaccine (tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis). If a tetanus containing vaccine has been administered in the five years prior to sixth grade entry, this booster vaccine is not required. Documentation of this vaccine may appear as DPT, Td, Dtap or Tdap.
A student whose immunizations are incomplete may be admitted conditionally, if the student provides documentary proof at the time of enrollment of having received at least one dose of the required immunization(s) accompanied by a schedule for completion of the remaining required dosage(s). At the time of enrollment, ALL immunizations must be as current and as up‐to‐date as possible. Enrollment and attendance can be delayed if compliance with immunization requirements is not met.
Questions and the need for further clarification of immunization requirements may be directed to your school nurse at your school or to the Student Health Services Office at 757.263.2025