Over the last 20 years, technology has opened the door to a far more flexible and personalized approach to learning. Millions of people have taken advantage of MOOCs, microcredentials and distance learning, not to mention countless informal modes of instruction ranging from podcasts to ebooks. This has all been a welcome development for the growing number of students who find that online, personalized instruction works better for them than does the traditional classroom. Today, roughly 5 million K–12 students take at least one course online, and more than 300,000 students attend a public online school full-time.
This has been a revolutionary development for a public education system that remained essentially unchanged for 200 years. As we are only beginning to discover the true potential of online learning, providers like us have a responsibility to ensure that it continues to evolve to best meet the needs of every student who chooses it.
Students choose online schools for a multitude of reasons. Some have very few options where they live; others find it hard to succeed in a traditional classroom. Some have social challenges or medical needs, and still others have special circumstances such as a parent in the military or another job that comes with regular moves. Some are academically gifted, and others arrive behind in their education.
Read the full article on THE Journal.