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PLUGGED IN (September 10, 2012)powered by iNACOL…DELL-VING INTO BLENDED LEARNING, PT 2 The second in a series of reports from the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation looking at blended learning models has been released. This time around, Summit Public Schools take center stage… (link)News…Four responses to the recent targeting of online learning and legislation in Maine:Another View: Online learning provides students with valuable skillsPortland Press Herald | Portland, MEOnline and blended learning options provide millions of students with the opportunity to learn from the best teachers available regardless of geography, using engaging digital tools and resources that allow educators to teach — and kids to learn — along a customizable learning path. Online learning is not for every (read)Maine Voices: Much ado over routine policymakingPortland Press Herald | Portland, MEI have witnessed guilt by association before, but have never been the object of it until last Sunday’s breathless expose by Colin Woodard on my efforts to develop a set of policies to guide the future of digital learning options for students. This was followed by an editorial a few days later claiming that we have (read)Group seeks to provide quality virtual educationKennebec Journal | Kennebec, METhe article in Sunday’s newspaper wrongly focuses on the for-profit status and lobbying ties of the virtual school educational service providers while failing to address the need for school choice for all of Maine’s students. For-profit companies are not new to education; neither are lobbyists. The teachers have (read)Portland Paper on a Digital Witch HuntGetting SmartA reporter who proudly proclaims “I’m an award-winning journalist with extensive global experience” appears to be panning for a Pulitzer from his perch in Portland. His second hit piece in a week attempts to “expose the flow of money and influence” in Maine education. Over the last 36 months, the editorial voice of (read)NJ Lawmakers Begin Study of Online Education in Charter SchoolsNJ SpotlightOnline education in charter schools — in all its different and controversial forms — will get the first of what could be several Statehouse hearings this week, as legislators start to sort out what is growing to be one of the state’s more contentious issues. The Joint Committee on the Public Schools will host the hearing (read)State’s first virtual academy opens amid questionsSanta Fe New Mexican | Santa Fe, NMAlthough she is enrolled in a public school, Monica Jackson may not go any farther than her living room to take classes in history, science and math this school year. And she may decide to go to school on Thanksgiving – when most schools are closed – and take a weekday off instead. Jackson, who just (read)Lakeland High School plunges into digital learningThe Record | Hackensack, NJLakeland Regional High School is digitalizing its curriculum this year by offering iPads to students in honors classes, setting up a computer lab with brand new Macs and expanding its wireless Internet network. Superintendent Anthony Riscica says he hopes the initiatives will help the school keep up with the (read)Ohio, Now With 28 New Charter SchoolsStateImpactThis school year, Ohio students are attending 28 brand-new charter schools. The new schools include some that blend online and classroom learning as well as two overseen by the Ohio Department of Education’s new sponsorship department. This year’s crop of 28 schools is down from 39 new ( read)Mesa high schools loosens student tech-device rulesThe Republic | Phoenix, AZMesa Public Schools has loosened its restrictions on high-school students who want to use personal technology for research during the school day. But it is about to crack down on teachers who send personal texts during work. “Before, our policy was ‘turned off and out of sight,’ ” district spokeswoman Helen (read)Grand Blanc School District hires ‘technology architect’ to bring updated gear into classroomsMLive | Flint, MITechnology in schools is constantly changing, which is why Grand Blanc school officials are dedicating one person to keep up on the trends. This year, Herb Wansitler was hired as the “technology architect” to design a future plan for equipment and software use throughout the district. “My end goal is to make (read)Zanesville High School launches project-based New Tech AcademyTimes Recorder | Zanesville, OHBy the time students hit high school, most have mastered the traditional school year routine. For 226 Zanesville High School freshmen and sophomores this year, they’re learning a whole new system. ZHS this year launched its Muskingum Valley New Tech Academy. Set apart in its own second-floor wing at (read)Should Local School Districts Open Their Own Cyber Schools?Forest Hills Patch | Forest Hills, PAReasons vary as to why people decide to enroll their children in cyber schools. For some, it’s to avoid disciplinary and behavior problems they feel are rampant in the brick-and-mortar school. Others feel their child is not thriving in public school and choose cyber school instead of charter, private or parochial (read)Douglas County students attend online schoolsNews-Review | Roseburg, ORElaine Disney fits high school between practicing for piano competitions and traveling from Roseburg to Eugene for lessons. This would be trickier if Disney, 15, were expected to be in a classroom all day. Instead, all she needs is a computer with Internet access. The Melrose resident is starting her (read)TN virtual school draws criticismThe Tennessean | Nashville, TNAs state officials lambaste the Tennessee Virtual Academy for low achievement scores and discuss new oversight methods, the school’s management company is facing an investigation in Florida, overcoming a list of citations issued in Georgia and recovering from reports of poor results in many of its schools. (read)LETTER: Online school responds to recent press reportsThe Leaf Chronicle | Clarksville, TNAs director of the Tennessee Virtual Academy (TNVA), I’d like to respond to the recent article referencing our school and its first year test results. TNVA is an online public school, one of many online learning programs offered throughout the state. Our public school connects certified teachers to students (read)Education firm’s past dealings analyzedThe Advocate | Baton Rouge, LAThree state education leaders said they are concerned about the background of a firm that wants to offer online classes to public school students through a new program to aid troubled schools. The company, JRL Enterprises, Inc., is one of 31 which are seeking state approval to offer courses for students outside (read)Charter schools keep growing as school districts face financial woesDaily Times | Primos, PAThree years ago, parents of fourth-grade students attending Widener Partnership Charter School recognized they soon would need to find a new school for their children. At the time, Widener Partnership only planned to expand through fifth grade. “They started saying, ‘All right Widener, we really like what you’re (read)Upper Darby School District super decries charter costsDaily Times | Primos, PASince 2007, charter schools have cost Upper Darby School District $10 million. This year, 303 students are enrolled in charter schools, 208 in cyber charter schools and 122 in brick and mortar charter schools, all outside the district, costing the district $3.5 million. District officials have taken issue with the (read)Best of the blogs…Quick Guide to the Common Core: Key Expectations Explained | Vander Ark on InnovationCracking the Credit Hour | CompetencyWorksChris Lehmann on Going Beyond Technology | TechnapexHow to Fuel the Innovation Engine in Learning | Mind/ShiftStay connected:
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