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Friday, February 03, 2006

Virtual Schooling in the News

From the Google news alert service for virtual school.

Schools closing, virtual school opening
Monsters and Critics.com - Glasgow, UK

Chicago Public School officials announced plans to shut down four more schools that fail to meet standards of the federal No Child Left Behind Act. Three underperforming elementary schools, Farren, Frazier and Morse, will close at the end of the current school year, affecting 1,065 students. Collins High School will be phased out over the next three years and no freshmen will be admitted next school year.

SD 73 pushes private company through
North Thompson Times - Clearwater, British Columbia, Canada

At a board meeting held Jan. 23, the third and final reading took place regarding a policy for School District 73 (SD 73) to form an incorporated business company; a necessity if plans to market virtual school to Japan were to come to fruition.At the end of the day, trustee Dick Dickens maintained his opposition to the policy and was the only "no" vote, taking a stand on principal, citing public education should be funded by the government. "I choose to view the new company as an opportunity, not a means to take education private," said Harwood. "The other trustees agree with me."The three directors for the company are dictated by position - secretary/treasury of SD 73, vice-chair of the board and the principal of the virtual school. As these positions rotate, whomever occupies the position will assume directorship in the company. Currently they are James Sheldon, Ken Christian and Don Poelzer, respectively.

Virtual High School begins second semester
KeepMEcurrent.com - Scarborough, ME, USA

Wednesday, Jan. 25, was a big day for 20 students at Sacopee Valley High School. Virtual High School online courses began at 12:01 a.m. These students are taking a wide variety of courses including courses from Pre-Advanced Placement to Animation and Personal Finance. Students are allowed to apply and register for courses not currently being offered at Sacopee Valley thus opening up a “whole new virtual world” to them.

Parents invited to learn more about virtual schools
Monroe Times - Monroe, WI, USA

Wisconsin Connections Academy (WCA), Wisconsin's first K-8 virtual charter school, today announced that Janesville-area parents interested in learning more about this public school option are invited to attend an interactive information session. The session will take place at 6:30 p.m. Monday, Feb. 6 at Blackhawk Technical College, 6004 Prairie Road in Janesville. Parents who attend will be able to talk with a local family whose children are currently enrolled in WCA, as well as with WCA teachers, to learn more about this virtual school option. Details about the school's individualized learning program, its well-respected and nationally recognized Calvert curriculum and Wisconsin's open enrollment process will also be provided. Pre-registration is not required, and anyone interested in learning more about WCA is invited to attend.

Mobile technology set to revitalise museum experience for pupils
eGov monitor - London, UK

Mobile technology set to revitalise museum experience for pupils An innovative new service that aims to use mobile phones to revitalise the museum experience for young people will launch next month at Portsmouth's D-Day Museum. Myartspace will enable educational groups visiting the D-Day Museum and Overlord Embroidery to explore, 'collect' and share cultural artefacts using mobile phones and the internet.

And from the Google news alert service for cyber school.

Resolution criticizes cyber school law
Pittsburgh Post Gazette - Pittsburgh, PA, USA

The Quaker Valley school board is putting state legislators and the Department of Education on notice about what it calls a fundamentally flawed approach to funding cyber charter schools. The board Tuesday adopted a resolution seeking equitable funding based on "true costs, reasonable educational oversight, and accountability" rather than formula-driven fees. State law requires school districts to pay 80 percent of their per-pupil costs as tuition for students who live in their service areas and enroll in online schools.

Cyber schools' array of choices touted
News-Herald - Franklin, PA, USA

The reasons for deciding to attend a cyber charter school are as varied as the students themselves. But after reading a number of letters to the newspaper from cyber school students and parents, some patterns begin to emerge. Several parents and students touted the array of choices offered by cyber schools. "The choices of classes far exceed the choices offered by the local schools," one parent wrote.

Public Meeting February 20 about Solanco Student Drug-Testing ...
SolancoNews.com - Quarryville, PA, USA

A public meeting will be held on Monday, February 20, at 7 p.m. in the Solanco High School auditorium, to discuss revisions to Solanco's drug-testing policy. The new policy would include mandatory, random drug testing for all middle school and high school students who participate in extracurricular and co-curricular activities. Also included in the new, mandatory random drug-testing program would be high school students who drive to school, and home-school and cyber-school students who participate in Solanco School District extracurricular activities. Solanco Superintendent Dr. Jon J. Rednak, and a committee of Solanco administrators and staff, have been developing the new policy, which was submitted to the Solanco Board of School Directors for a first reading in January.

Districts dial up anger over cyber schools
Lebanon Daily News - Lebanon, PA, USA

Lebanon County school districts are spending thousands of dollars each year to educate students who don’t go to classes in their schools. And they’re getting pretty tired of it. Pennsylvania requires school districts to foot the tuition bill for students who live in their districts and choose to take classes via the Internet through “cyber schools” instead of in the traditional school setting. These cyber schools receive payments from the home districts according to how much the districts spend per pupil at their schools.

GHS presents i-Safe
Germantown News - Germantown, TN, USA

Parents: do you think you know what your kids are doing online? According to an informal survey at an area school, 90 percent of parents feel they know what their children do online; 37 to 47 percent of children say that their parents don't know at all what they do while on the Internet. On Thursday, February 9, Shelby County Schools will host a national awareness campaign, coordinated by i-Safe- a non-profit, government funded, Internet safety foundation that teaches children how to surf the web safely. The presentation for parents in the Germantown community will be held in the auditorium at Germantown High School. [See all stories on this topic]

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