Virtual Schools---Growing 25% Yearly, Already a Million Student Strong
As a seventh-grader, Kelsey-Anne Hizer was getting mostly D's and F's and felt the teachers at her Ocala middle school were not giving her the help she needed. But after switching to a virtual school for eighth grade, Kelsey-Anne is receiving more individual attention and making A's and B's. She's also enthusiastic about learning, even though she has never been in the same room as her teachers.Wired
...virtual schools are growing fast - at an annual rate of about 25 percent. There are 25 statewide or state-led programs and more than 170 virtual charter schools across the nation, according to the North American Council for Online Learning.
...virtual learning has almost unlimited potential. Many envision a blending of virtual and traditional learning.
"We hope that it becomes just another piece of our public schools' day rather than still this thing over here that we're all trying to figure out," said Julie Young, Florida Virtual's president and CEO.
Florida Virtual is one of the nation's oldest and largest online schools, with more than 55,000 students in Florida and around the world, most of them part-time. Its motto is "Any Time, Any Place, Any Path, Any Pace."
...Casey Hutcheson, 17, finished English and geometry online in the time it would have taken to complete just one of those courses at his regular high school in Tallahassee.
"I like working by myself because of no distractions, and I can go at my own pace rather than going at the teacher's pace," he said.
While teacher's unions and other backward looking vested interests attempt to have virtual schools and charter schools shut down, virtual education for all ages is actually just getting started. Several states have endorsed and adopted virtual schooling, including Florida and Wisconsin.
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