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Sunday, July 10, 2005

Virtual Schools Offer a Wider Selection

A couple of weeks ago, Darren Cannell from Teaching and Developing Online posted an entry about Education Options. Typical of Darren's entries, it points to a full article from Government Technology with the same title, Education Options, by Emily Montandon with the sub-title "Virtual schools offer a wider selection for students and families, and create questions for states."

The article states that at present

"At least 15 states have distance education programs for public school students, according to the U.S. Department of Education's 2004 report, Toward a New Golden Age in American Education -- How the Internet, the Law and Today's Students Are Revolutionizing Expectations. A deluge of regional and districtwide programs exist as well, and new programs are cropping up all the time.

Within the next decade, the report predicted, every state and most schools will offer some form of virtual schooling."

The promise of these opportunities, as the article puts it is that "virtual schools offer students and their families scheduling flexibility, course options, varied learning formats and experience that will benefit them beyond their schooling."

It is interesting that one of the individuals, an administrator even (as I know that I have beat up on administrators last month), stated - quite wisely I thought - "Online schools are an indicator of education's path for the future, a logical next step in a society where, thanks to the Internet and technology, we expect more conveniences."

In previous posts I have asked the question of whether or not virtual schooling was the wave of the future, the next big thing, the saviour of public education, etc. From this article it seems that virtual schooling is seen as just the next logic evolution of schools based upon society's own expectations and habits.

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Blogger Nathan Lowell said...

What would it take to open an online high school?

Several months ago I ran across this post asking "Why can't you get your GED on the street? with some pretty compelling statistics.

The convergence of
- Home schooling
- New interest in drop outs
- The increased influence of Fundamentalism
- Online delivery systems
makes the prospect of creating an online high school very much a viable operation.

The shape and nature of the school would be different than what we see today. For example, in order to side-step licensure issues, shaping it as an adjunct resource for home schoolers to use -- or as a preparatory course for GED -- would allow the curriculum to be designed, developed, and implemented by individuals who lacked state credentials.

Like the PhD's in the AECT, for example -- many of whom teach the teachers but don't hold secondary ed licenses.

Something to think about...

7:42 AM  

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