The state should ensure that middle school teachers are sufficiently prepared to teach appropriate grade-level content.
Virginia requires a middle education (grades 6-8) endorsement for middle school teachers. Candidates must earn a major in interdisciplinary studies or its equivalent.
All new middle school teachers in Virginia are also required to pass a single-subject Praxis II content test to attain licensure; a general content knowledge test is not an option.
Differentiate between single and multiple subject middle school teachers.
Virginia is commended for not allowing middle school teachers to teach on a K-8 generalist license. However, it should encourage middle school teachers who plan to teach multiple subjects to earn two minors in two core academic areas, rather than a single major. Virginia should retain its requirement for a subject-area major for middle school candidates who intend to teach a single subject.
Virginia asserted that candidates are encouraged to obtain two areas of concentration, and most individuals do obtain two areas on their license. The option for one area is available, and it is used primarily for individuals coming to Virginia from other states who have only one area on a license.