Certifying Online Virginia Educators
The application for Fall 2018 will open in September.
VCU has been awarded a state-funded grant to offer graduate level online courses leading to a five-year renewable license with an endorsement in special education: general curriculum. Eligible participants are special educators holding a valid conditional or provisional teaching license who are working with students with high incidence disabilities.
The COVE program is now available for special educators in all regions of Virginia.
In order to be admitted into the COVE program, you must meet the following guidelines:
- Be employed as a teacher under the Special Education, General Curriculum endorsement
- Hold a provisional teaching license with endorsement in Special Education, General Curriculum K-12
- Have at least 18 months to 2 years left before provisional license expires, since you’ll need at least 5 semesters for coursework (assuming there are no transfer courses)
- Verification from hiring school district of employment as a provisionally licensed teacher under the Special Education, General Curriculum K-12
Tuition and costs
Funding for COVE is dependent on annual support from the Virginia Department of Education. Tuition amounts are subject to change based on funding from the VDOE and changes to tuition scales at VCU.
For 2017-18, the VCU School of Education COVE cohort rate is $240 per credit. Therefore, the total of a three-credit course would be $720, a two-credit course would be $480 and a one-credit course would cost $240.
- SEDP 501 Characteristics of Students with High Incidence Disabilities (3 credits)
- SEDP 502 Supervision Seminar I (1 credit)
- SEDP 503 Supervision Seminar II (1 credit)
- SEDP 531 Educational Foundations for Collaboration and Universally Designed Learning (3 credits)
- SEDP 533 Educational Assessment of Students with Diverse Learning Needs (3 credits)
- SEDP 602 Methods II: Teaching Students in Special Education – General Education (2 credits)
- SEDP 603 Theories, Assessment and Practices in Reading for Students with High Incidence Disabilities (3 credits)
The following list of courses shows all the classes that make up the COVE program – please note, however, that not all of these courses will be offered in a given semester. To find the list of classes currently being offered, please see the “Registration” tab below.
Courses that comprise the COVE program
- SEDP 501 Characteristics of Students with High Incidence Disabilities – 3 credits
- SEDP 502 Supervision Seminar I – 1 credit
- SEDP 503 Supervision Seminar II – 1 credit
- SEDP 531 Educational Foundations for Collaboration and Universally Designed Learning – 3 credits
- SEDP 533 Educational Assessment of Individuals with Diverse Learning Needs – 3 credits
- SEDP 601 Methods I: Teaching Students in Special Education–General Education – 3 credits
- SEDP 602 Methods II: Teaching Students in Special Education – General Education – 2 credits
- SEDP 603 Theories, Assessment and Practices in Reading for Students with High Incidence Disabilities – 3 credits
- SEDP 611 Secondary Education and Transition Planning – 2 credits
- SEDP 631 Classroom Management and Behavior Support for Students with Disabilities- 3 credits
- TEDU 561 Reading Foundations: Sociological/Psychological Perspectives – 3 credits
COVE Professional Development
A critical part of COVE is the approach we will use in mentoring our scholars. Once accepted into COVE, scholars will receive ongoing support and professional development opportunities to ensure continuous support for provisionally licensed special educators enrolled in the COVE program.
The Professional Development for COVE scholars will include:
- Monthly workshops conducted by VCU professors and partners from school divisions that will focus on best practices in engaging students and preparing them for the general curriculum.
- The workshops also focus on introducing candidates to school divisions’ curriculum, culture, and history. There will be a focus on best practices around such topics as differentiated instruction, classroom management, and using data to improve instruction.
While the workshops are not mandated, they are recommended for COVE participants as a resource for learning how to navigate the pressures and expectations of the first few years of teaching.
Registration for courses
To register for COVE classes, please contact Lauren Mortensen at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please note: To drop a COVE-sponsored course and not be financially responsible for payment of tuition, you must drop a course through eServices by the course drop date of the university’s academic calendar or the drop date provide by the COVE coordinator, Lauren Mortensen. After the drop date has ended, you can withdraw from the course, but you will still be responsible for payment of tuition.
The Virginia Department of Education heavily subsidizes the COVE program, which is why the course cost is so low. If you fail or withdraw from a course, you will not be allowed to re-take that course through the COVE program — the state subsidy can only be used once. If the course is available, you may be able to re-take the course through OCPE at the regular VCU cost.
Please note: COVE funds will not be applied to student accounts until after the start of courses. Please rely on VCU eServices to view your student information, including your current bill.
Finished the COVE program – now what?
The VCU COVE program leads to full collegiate professional licensure for individuals completing the entire sequence of courses and who have at least one year of supervised teaching experience. When your final grades in the program are posted on your transcript, send an email to Dr. LaRon Scott at email@example.com requesting Verification of COVE Completion.
Dr. Scott will reply to your email with directions as to what forms you must complete and fax in to the School of Education’s Student Services Center. Any graduate courses taken outside of the COVE program that are to be used as substitute courses must be on a transcript sent in with your request for verification. A signed copy of the verification will be sent to your school division’s human resource department, who will assist you in obtaining your license and endorsement. You must receive a grade of “C” or higher in every course in order for VCU to verify completion.
Frequently asked questions
The VCU COVE program is a combined effort of the Department of Counseling and Special Education at VCU, the Virginia Department of Education, and school divisions across Virginia. Program participants will receive coursework and other activities leading to endorsement in Special Education, General Curriculum. All courses will be Web-based and taught by an instructor who is a faculty member in the Department of Counseling and Special Education at VCU.
Please visit the following link for additional information and FAQs [PDF].
VCU School of Education's M.Ed. in special education program
If you are interested in transferring coursework taken through the COVE program into the M.Ed in special education, general education program, please contact Dr. LaRon Scott at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Contact us today
Jenna Lenhardt, Ph.D.
LaRon A. Scott, Ed.D.
Assistant professor and COVE program coordinator
Counseling and Special Education