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Legislative Priorities

The framework of Henrico County Public Schools’ legislative agenda is guided by the division’s strategic plan and the Board’s focus in the following areas:

  • Academic Achievement
  • Equity and Diversity
  • Funding
  • Highly Qualified Staff
  • Local School Board Autonomy
  • Optimal Pupil-Teacher Ratio
  • Safe Schools
  • Positive Student Behavior
  • Technology
  • Life-Ready Skills

Every year, the Board establishes specific areas of emphasis within this framework that are likely to be impacted during the upcoming legislative session. The following Legislative Priorities were formally adopted by the Board in advance of the 2023 General Assembly session:

Academic Achievement
  • Support the continuing review of the state’s assessment program to ensure it includes a balance of formative, performance and standardized assessments.
  • Support additional funding and expanded flexibility for  services for English learners.
  • Support legislation to define the role of special education advocates at individual meetings and hearings more clearly, including the development and implementation of an associated code of ethics.
  • Oppose legislation that would impose any unfunded mandates.
  • Support legislation that would provide full funding for implementing the SOQs.
  • Support state funding to recruit and retain critical instructional, operational and support staff and to remove obstacles for their hiring.
  • Support legislation and budget action that includes rebenchmarking for Direct Aid to Public Education to incorporate recent increases in inflation.
  • Support legislation and funding that improves equitable access to high-speed internet and appropriate technology for all students, communities and school staff.
Instructional Personnel/Teacher Recruitment
  • Support state funding to address critical teacher shortages, including increased teacher pay to the national average, increased funding for the Virginia Teaching Scholarship Loan Program and other grants and bonuses for critical shortage teaching areas and hard-to-staff schools.
  • Support actions to create additional avenues and funding support for teachers to obtain licenses and for people to enter the teaching profession while still maintaining high professional standards.
  • Support adjusting the Support Cap funding model to increase funding for critical positions such as assistant principals and instructional assistants.
  • Support the removal of the statutory 90-day limit and waiver requirement for long-term substitute teachers who are temporarily filling teacher vacancies.
  • Support professional development for teachers by increasing state funding for National Board Certification Incentive Awards and by covering fees for educators seeking such certification or licensure, i.e., Praxis exams.
Safe Schools and Student Wellness
  • Support legislation that strengthens school safety and security and provides resources for school divisions to help fund security personnel, technology or hardware.
  • Support legislation and funding to increase school-based mental health professionals, school social workers, school psychologists and behavioralists in schools.
  • Support legislation and budget action that assists students facing challenges of housing, foster care, those with special needs or who need mental health services.
Local School Board Autonomy
  • Oppose any legislation that would limit or remove local school board authority over any established schools in the local school division.

In addition to these 2023 legislative priorities, the Board holds continuing positions that support other areas including an SOQ funding model for Governor’s schools, Career and Technical Education, pre-kindergarten education, student accountability and achievement, technology and transportation.

Just the Facts

2022 Annual Stakeholder Survey Report

2022 Per-Pupil Expenditure

Schools and Centers

  • Elementary: 46
  • Middle: 12
  • High: 9
  • Advanced Career Education (ACE) centers: 3
  • Alternative program centers: 3
  • Henrico Virtual Academy: 1

Total schools and centers: 74


  • Elementary: 21,483
  • Middle: 11,108
  • High: 15,798
  • Other: 588

Total students: 48,977

Pupil-Teacher Ratio

  • Elementary: 19.1
  • Secondary: 18.3
    (Includes students learning in person and at Henrico Virtual Academy.)

Student Diversity

  • African American: 35.2%
  • Asian: 13.2%
  • Caucasian: 33.5%
  • Hispanic: 12.5%
  • Multiple Races: 5.2%
  • Other: 0.4%
  • Economically deprived: 43 %
    (Internal calculation)
  • Languages spoken across the division: 100+

2022 Graduates

  • Total graduates: 3,716
  • On-time graduation rate: 90%
  • Plan to continue education: 73%
  • Scholarships accepted: $21.9 million


  • Total teachers: 4,256
  • Total employees (full-time equivalent): 7,468


  • 2022-2023 operating budget: $762.9 million
  • Per-pupil expenditure: $14,133

For information related to the HCPS legislative agenda, please contact Ken Blackstone, assistant director of communications.