K-12 Governance Structures: State Profile

K-12 Governance Structures: State Profile - Virginia

November 2017


Data are collected using publicly available state constitutional language and state statutes. Updated as of Nov. 1, 2017.
 

Governor
What constitutional or statutory duties does the governor have as it relates to education? The chief executive power of the Commonwealth shall be vested in a governor.

Every bill which passes the senate and house of delegates, before it becomes law, shall be presented to the governor. The governor may sign the bill if he approves it, and the bill shall become law. The governor may veto the bill if he objects to it by returning the bill with his objections to the house in which the bill originated.

The governor shall have the power to veto any particular item or items of an appropriation bill, but the veto shall not affect the item or items to which he does not object.

The governor shall take care that the laws be faithfully executed.
What is the appointment authority provided to the governor in education? The governor appoints the state board of education and the superintendent of public instruction, subject to confirmation by the general assembly.
Are the governor’s duties and powers and found in the state constitution? Yes
Are the governor’s duties and powers and found in the state statute? Yes
Citation VA Const. Art. 5, § 1
VA Const. Art. 5, § 6
VA Const. Art. 5, § 7
VA Const. Art. 8, § 6
VA Const. Art. 8, § 4
VA Code Ann. § 22.1-9
VA Code Ann. § 22.1-21
Legislature
What constitutional or statutory powers does the legislature have as it relates to education policy? The legislative power of the commonwealth shall be vested in a general assembly, which shall consist of a senate and house of delegates.

The general assembly shall provide for a system of free public elementary and secondary schools for all children of school age throughout the commonwealth, and shall seek to ensure that an educational program of high quality is established and continually maintained.

The general assembly shall determine the manner in which funds are to be provided for the cost of maintaining an educational program meeting the prescribed standards of quality, and shall provide for the apportionment of the cost of such program between the commonwealth and the local units of government comprising such school divisions.

The general assembly shall provide for the compulsory elementary and secondary education of every eligible child of appropriate age, such eligibility and age to be determined by law.
What is the appointment or confirmation authority of the legislature in education? The general assembly confirms the governor's appointments to the state board of education and for state superintendent of public instruction.
Which committees in the legislature have jurisdiction over education issues? House:
Education

Senate:
Education and Health
Constitutional? Yes
Statutory? Yes
Citations VA Const. Art. 4, § 1
VA Const. Art. 8, § 1
VA Const. Art. 8, § 2
VA Const. Art. 8, § 3
VA Const. Art. 8, § 4
VA Code Ann. § 22.1-9
VA Const. Art. 8, § 6
VA Code Ann. § 22.1-21
Chief State School Officer
What are the duties of the chief state officer? The superintendent of public instruction shall:

-Serve as secretary of the board of education.

-Provide such assistance in his office as shall be necessary for the proper and uniform enforcement of the provisions of the school laws in cooperation with the local school authorities.

-At least annually, survey all local school divisions to identify critical shortages of teachers and administrative personnel.

-Perform such other duties as the board of education may prescribe.
What constitutional or statutory authority does the chief state school officer have as it relates to education policy? The secretary may:

-Resolve administrative, jurisdictional, or policy conflicts between any agencies or officers for which he is responsible.

-Provide policy direction for programs involving more than a single agency.

-Direct preparation of alternative policies, plans, and budgets for education for the governor.

-Direct the formulation of a comprehensive program budget for cultural affairs encompassing the programs and activities of the agencies involved in cultural affairs.

-Consult with agencies for which he responsible and report to the general assembly.
How is the chief state school officer selected? The secretary is appointed by the governor and confirmed by the general assembly.
Constitutional? Yes
Statutory? Yes
Citation VA Code Ann. § 22.1-23
VA Code Ann. § 2.2-208
VA Const. Art. 8, § 6
VA Code Ann. § 22.1-21
State Board of Education
What constitutional or statutory powers and duties does the state board of education have as it relates to education policy? The general supervision of the public school system shall be vested in the board of education.

The powers and duties of the state board of education include:

-The board shall divide the Commonwealth into school divisions of such geographical area and school-age population as will promote the realization of the prescribed standards of quality, and shall periodically review the adequacy of existing school divisions for this purpose.

-Make annual reports to the governor and the general assembly concerning the condition and needs of public education in the Commonwealth, and shall in such report identify any school divisions which have failed to establish and maintain schools meeting the prescribed standards of quality.

-It shall certify to the school board of each division a list of qualified persons for the office of division superintendent of schools, one of whom shall be selected to fill the post by the division school board.

-It shall have authority to approve textbooks and instructional aids and materials for use in courses in the public schools of the commonwealth.

-Subject to the ultimate authority of the general assembly, the board shall have primary responsibility and authority for effectuating the educational policy set forth in this Article, and it shall have such other powers and duties as may be prescribed by law
What is the composition of the state board of education? The state board of education consists of nine members. At least two of whom shall represent business and industry in the commonwealth.
How are members of the state board of education selected? Members of the state board of education are appointed by the governor and confirmed by the general assembly.
Constitutional? Yes
Statutory? Yes
Citation VA Code Ann. § 22.1-8
VA Const. Art. 8, § 5
VA Const. Art. 8, § 4
VA Code Ann. § 22.1-9
Executive-Level Secretary
Does the state have an executive-level secretary? The superintendent of public instruction serves as secretary to the state board of education.
What other duties does the executive-level secretary have? N/A
Constitutional? No
Statutory? Yes
Citation VA Code Ann. § 22.1-23

© 2019 by the Education Commission of the States (ECS). All rights reserved. ECS is the only nationwide, nonpartisan interstate compact devoted to education. 700 Broadway #810, Denver, CO 80203-3442

To request permission to excerpt part of this publication, either in print or electronically, please contact the Education Commission of the States’ Communications Department at 303.299.3609 or askinner@ecs.org.

Your Education Policy Team  www.ecs.org