Virtual School Meanderings

April 24, 2014

LRN: The NCAA Drops The Hammer On K12

I’ve always described the NCAA approach to online learning – and in particularly full-time online learning – as well thought out.  This is another example of that reasoned approach.

The NCAA drops the hammer on K12 • 1:32 PM

  • Shares of K12 (LRN +0.7%) are volatile today with a report out indicating the NCAA won’t accept coursework from 24 online schools affiliated with the company.
  • Full NCAA notitication letter (.pdf)

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Another blog entry on this topic:

Of course, K12, Inc. needed to respond – and as you might expect they passed the blame to everyone but themselves, without really addressing any of the NCAA’s specific concerns.

Make Waves – Call for Participation Extended – First Ever SoftChalk User Conference

From Tuesday’s inbox…

Call for Participation Extended to May 5

Make Waves—Become an eLearning Superstar!

Ahoy Chalkies!

The deadline for submitting presentation proposals for the First Ever SoftChalk User Conference has been extended! We’ll now be accepting proposals through May 5th!

Share your Expertise with Colleagues

Submit your Proposal and become an eLearning Superstar by sharing your innovative learning initiatives, ideas and tips with your colleagues. We’ll notify you of acceptance by May 15. Presentations will take place on Thursday, October 2, 2014.

For more details, visit our First Ever SoftChalk User Conference website (created in SoftChalk Cloud of course).

Submit your Proposal

Important Dates:

  • March 19 – May 5- Call for Participation Open
  • May 15 – Notification of Proposal Acceptance
  • Now – July 31- Early Bird Registration
  • August 1 – October 2 – Regular Registration
  • October 1-2 – SoftChalk User Conference

If you have any questions, please contact us at We look forward to seeing you in October!

The SoftChalk Team

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British Journal of Educational Technology: Content Alert (New Articles)

I did not receive the Yahoo stock alert again this morning…  So, from Monday’s inbox…

Cover image for Vol. 45 Issue 3

British Journal of Educational Technology

© British Educational Research Association

Early View (Online Version of Record published before inclusion in an issue)

These Early View articles are now available on Wiley Online Library


TEL@work: Toward integration of theory and practice
Article first published online: 17 APR 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/bjet.12164

Original Articles

A comparative study of the effects of cultural differences on the adoption of mobile learning
Ibrahim Arpaci
Article first published online: 14 APR 2014 | DOI: 10.1111/bjet.12160

April 23, 2014

Plugged In | 04.23.14 | (powered by iNACOL)

A final word from the neo-liberals…

To view this email as a web page, go here.


PLUGGED IN  04.23.14
powered by iNACOL…


Leveraging the Core Budget to Change America’s Schools
Getting Smart
Across Reynoldsburg City School District (RCS), personalization of learning is increasingly achieved at the classroom and individual student level through the shift to blended learning. Blended learning requires a fundamental redesign of instructional (read)
Lawmakers Push To Expand High-Speed Internet To All Of MN
WCCO | Minneapolis, MN
Top Minnesota lawmakers are making a major push to expand high-speed internet to regions of the state that still don’t have it. Minnesota House Democrats are proposing big internet upgrades they say will improve rural schoolsand businesses. Getting high (read)
Virtual school looks to expand enrollment
The Recorder | Greenfield, MA
With a new downtown space and independence from the Greenfield School Department, the town’s public virtual school is ready to grow and will look to enroll about 850 students next year. The Massachusetts Virtual Academy at Greenfield uses the Internet to ( read)
Are Existing Tech Tools Effective for Teachers and Students?
The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation just released a report detailing the results of 3,100 teacher surveys and 1,250 student surveys on the kinds of digital instruction tools that are useful and effective. The foundation has asked teachers and students what they (read)
High school students manage classes, jobs
Newark Advocate | Newark, OH
Austen Kaylor insists it wasn’t that difficult being a high school student, a dad and an employee all at the same time. Simple, he said. Get up, go to school, go to work, go to bed, get up, do it all again. “It’s really honestly not that hard,” he said. “Do the same (read)
What inBloom’s Shutdown Means for the Industry
In less than two years, inBloom went from being a sort of Holy Grail for student data services to a sacrificial lamb that has brought data and privacy discussions to the forefront. On Monday, April 21, inBloom CEO Iwan Streichenberger announced on the (read)
Let’s Make a Deal
Inside Higher Ed
As the billion-dollar education technology industry holds what has become its primary gathering here this week, the onus is on vendors to show they can produce not only profits, but also improved outcomes. The rise of the Education Innovation Summit (read)
Google Amends Terms for Scanning User Data
Education Week
In the wake of an ongoing federal lawsuit and growing public scrutiny over how Google scans and mines the data of its users, including students, the giant online-services provider has amended its terms of service and privacy policies. The new terms of ( read)
5 Things Edtech Startups Can Learn From Classroom Teachers
Edtech is a big market, trillions of dollars globally. No wonder there are so many entrepreneurs trying to grab a piece. In an age when start-up entrepreneurs routinely try to come up with the next big gold rush, however, it is easy to forget that the (read)
5 Bold Predictions For The Future Of Higher Education
The future of higher education is a constantly moving target. Everything from the emergence of MOOCs to new learning styles and mounting financial and sustainability pressures are impacting the education landscape. Every day higher education (read)
Smart Sparrow and Arizona State University to Launch HabWorlds Beyond
Press Release
Today, Smart Sparrow, a platform that lets educators create rich, interactive and adaptive learning experiences, announced in collaboration with ASU Online the launch of HabWorlds Beyond, a new type of online course. HabWorlds Beyond teaches (read)
ICYMI: Top 3 stories from Tuesday’s Plugged In…

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Reminder: Special iNACOL Webinar, 4/24 – Understanding Grading in Competency-based Schools

Notice of a webinar from the neo-liberals for tomorrow…

To view this email as a web page, go here.

International Association for K-12 Online Learning (iNACOL)


Understanding Grading in Competency-based Schools




Thursday, April 24th, 2:00pm – 3:00pm ET
On Thursday, April 24th, the International Association for K-12 Online Learning (iNACOL) and CompetencyWorks will present a special webinar to help educators and administrators throughout the field of K-12 learning better understand grading in competency-based schools.
During the webinar, Chris Sturgis, Principal at MetisNet and author of Progress and Proficiency: Redesigning Grading for Competency Education, will provide an overview of competency education and the elements of grading in competency-based environments.
Abbie Forbus and Brett Grimm from Lindsay Unified School District in California, will share Lindsay’s grading practices. Lindsay Unified, a Race to the Top winner, has a strong personalized, performance-based system and well-developed grading system that emphasizes providing feedback to learners. Forbus and Grimm will provide an overview of the values and educational philosophy that guides Lindsay’s grading policy. Going into more depth, they will present the structure, practices, and reporting mechanisms. During this webinar, attendees will learn how their information management system enables teachers, students and families to monitor student learning and progress along their learning progressions. The final segment of the webinar will offer a discussion on implementation challenges and emerging issues.

This webinar is free to attend, but please register HERE for final details and login information.

For a copy of Progress and Proficiency: Redesigning Grading for Competency Education, please visit


  • Abbie Forbus, Counselor, Lindsay Unified High School
  • Brett Grimm, Assistant Principal of Curriculum & Instruction, Lindsay Unified High School
  • Chris Sturgis, MetisNet and co-founder of CompetencyWorks
About iNACOL
The mission of the International Association for K-12 Online Learning (iNACOL) is to ensure all students have access to a world-class education and quality blended and online learning opportunities that prepare them for a lifetime of success. iNACOL is a non-profit organization focusing on research, developing policy for student-centered education to ensure equity and access, developing quality standards for emerging learning models using online, blended, and competency-based education, and supporting the ongoing professional development of classroom, school, and district leaders for new learning models. To learn more about iNACOL, please visit

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Find out more about iNACOL and our mission on:

iNACOL on the Giving Library



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