The Virginia Association of Agricultural Educators (VAAE) is a member of the National Association of Agricultural Educators (NAAE), an organization created to serve as a national voice and unifying force for agriculture teachers across the United States. The organization (NAAE) has grown over the years from having a part-time executive secretary to a full-time professional staff. The NAAE office is located on the campus of the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, and the organization continues to position itself as a strong monitoring agent for advocacy and professional issues in the agricultural education profession. (NAAE Leadership Handbook).
Virginia Agricultural Education is divided geographically into five Areas: Appalachian, Central, Eastern, Northern and Southside. Within these boundaries, over 100 Old Dominion schools offer programs of agricultural instruction and employ over 300 teachers of agricultural education. Of this number, roughly one-third claim VAAE membership, and a number serve and provide leadership at various regional, state and national levels.
For example, in 2009, Virginia is proud to have VAAE member Mrs. Sally Shomo – an Agricultural Instructor and FFA Advisor from Beverly Manor Middle School in Staunton, Virginia -- serving as National president of the NAAE.
Today, the NAAE represents the needs and concerns of over 12,000 agriculture teachers at the middle school, high school, postsecondary and adult levels of instruction. NAAE offers professional development opportunities, legislative advocacy, leadership development education, technical inservice and many more services and opportunities. With a rich heritage and tradition to build upon, the NAAE is poised for future growth and success in the years ahead. (NAAE Leadership Handbook).
As a proud member of this parent organization, the Virginia Association of Agricultural Educators supports these ideals and our teachers are committed to providing the state and national leadership necessary to make these lofty goals a reality.