Virtual School Meanderings

August 4, 2014

EDTECH537 – End Of Course

Eight weeks ago I posted an entry entitled EDTECH537 – Blogging In The Classroom that described a course I have been teaching for the Department of Educational Technology at Boise State University this summer semester. During that time I have posted weekly messages to describe what I was asking the students to do and the readings I had assigned.

I have also posted entries for all of the activities I have asked of the students:

I have also posted sample blog entries for each of the different types of entries that I have asked of the students.

Finally, during one of the early weeks I posted a sample entry about the readings, and then later I asked the students to participate in blogging in three different formats:

This year I also made a point of highlighting things in the monthly statistics entries for my EDTECH537 students.

I post this summary message for those folks who haven’t been following along for the past eight weeks, as I suspect this will be the closest I ever get to one of those # days to a better blog series.

July 31, 2014

EDTECH537 – Statistics for July 2014

As readers of this blog are familiar with, generally at the end of each month I will post a back dated entry for 23:59pm on the last day of the month quickly outlining the statistics for the past month. As I mentioned last month, I am once again teaching my EDTECH537 – Blogging In The Classroom course and I wanted to try to do a bit more detailed version of this entry, and reflect a little more for my students.

This past month there were 3,968 visitors to this blog. This is compared with 3,197 in the month of June and 5,184 from July 2013.  The most visited entries over the past 30 days were:

  1. Questions About The School Of Tomorrow
  2. EDTECH537 – Potential Hazards Of Blogging
  3. EDTECH537 – Examining Generational Differences
  4. Master Mobile Learning Techniques for Increased Student Engagement
  5. iNACOL Summer Spotlight: Blended Learning
  6. CANeLearn 2014: Ontario Summit – What’s The Future Look Like Now That We Are All Online Learners? How Did We Get Here And Where Are We Going?
  7. EDTECH537 – Guest Blogger: Roles For MOOCs In Online And Blended Learning
  8. Instructional Technology Dissertation Topics
  9. Virtual Schooling In The News
  10. Create Interactive eBooks with SoftChalk Create 9

In looking at where people came from to get to this blog (i.e., how they found these and other entries), search engines accounted for approximately a third of the referrers this past month. This was followed by Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, and

Those folks that used search engines, used the following terms:

  • a decade later, pennsylvania cyber schools go viral
  • early bird
  • does georgia connections academy get 100 percent of state funding for each student
  • cyber school,nc
  • york city bearcat cyber academy
  • qsl physics lab kit
  • advanced placement conference 2014
  • open learning journal
  • phrase “from april 22 to the 24″
  • panow + credenda

Last month I promise that I would dive into the statistics that Feedburner keeps a little more, as my EDTECH537 students created Feedburner accounts to add to their blogs.



Note that none of the top three entries recorded by Feedburner were listed in the top ten entries as collected by WordPress.  Also note that in the past 30 days, Feedburner recorded over 8,500 views and over 4,000 clicks from the entries – both of which are higher than the less than 4,000 recorded by WordPress.  What this tells me is that more than twice as many people access my blog through the RSS feed I have created in Feedburner, as opposed to directly on the blog itself.

Further, according to Google they described “uncommon uses” as:

FeedBurner manages hundreds of thousands of feeds and in doing so, we’ve catalogued thousands of common places where feeds are referenced throughout the web. These include email clients, web-based feed aggregators, news filters, and more, each outlined in detailed in the Subscriber section of your Analyze tab.

Beyond these known places, FeedBurner can also help identify “Uncommon Uses” of your feed content. These references could be a neat little news filter somebody wrote, a blog somebody assembled from feeds, or even blog spam. Whatever it is, we’ve found that publishers want to see where their content is republished and it’s very helpful to have something like FeedBurner to provide visibility into usage. When FeedBurner identifies an “uncommon” use, we highlight it in your main Analyze tab Dashboard and in the detailed Uncommon Uses section within this tab as well.

This essentially tells me that there are several places that scrape my content (see blog scraping).

As I end each statistics entry, the data from my old blog site (which I have left up to allow those that may have linked to specific entries to still be able to find them).


July 30, 2014

EDTECH537 – Blogging Plan

As I mentioned in the Week 8 entry for EDTECH537 – Blogging In The Classroom course, I did want to post an example of a blogging plan.  What I tried to do was post some of the regular features that I know will be posted each day, plus at least one substantive entry per week.  I know that the former Sloan-C and SoftChalk and several others will be sending me multiple items per week, I suspect I’ll get monthly newsletters  from Alpha Omega Alpha, VHS Collaborative, Florida Virtual School, Learn, etc..  But here is what I am reasonable sure of, and want to aspire to (in the case of the substantive entries).



July 29, 2014

EDTECH537 – Discussion Question Entry: Should Corporations Run Publicly Funded Online Schools?

A while ago, this scrolled across my electronic desk and I thought that it would make good fodder for my second entry – topic of my choosing – for Week 8 of my EDTECH537 – Blogging In The Classroom course.

Laura DevaneyIn today’s news: Should education be run like a business? A new report is generating a heated debate on the topic. Plus, how to help your teachers ease into social media use; and a district’s decision to monitor students’ social media activity raises eyebrows.Leave your thoughts on any or all of these stories online, eMail me at, or find me on Twitter @eSN_Laura.

Laura Devaney, Managing Editor
Tweet me @eSN_Laura

Top News of the Day

Should businesses run schools?

It’s a question that has come up recently thanks to a national movement towards school reform: “Should schools be run like a business?” According to a new guide released by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce [ Read More ]

Given that this will be my last official EDTECH537 post for the Summer 2014 term, I wanted to ask folks a version of this question…

Should corporations directly manage publicly-funded online schools?


July 28, 2014

EDTECH537 – List Entry: History Of K-12 Online Learning Programs

A while ago, an online Advanced Placement teacher who was in attendance for the Virtual Advanced Placement Conference that was held last month at Binghamton University contacted me to ask me about the history of K-12 online learning programs in the United States, and specifically if there was a listing of the programs and when they first began.  To the best of my knowledge, there isn’t a comprehensive list and I sent him some sources to get him started.  Having said that, the idea has been in my head since, so I began to pick and poke at creating my own such list based on what I know on the topic.  And since I’ve got as much done on it as I figure I’ll get done, I thought that it would make good fodder for my first entry – topic of my choosing – for Week 8 of my EDTECH537 – Blogging In The Classroom course.  So here is the list and the specific references that I have for them.

Private Online Schools

Full-Time, Public Online Schools

Supplemental Online Schools

For-Profit Content Provider


Laurel Springs School (Barbour, 2011)


Choice 2000 (Darrow, 2010)

Utah Electronic High School (Clark, 2003)


Christa McAuliffe Academy (Clark, 2001)


Apex Learning (Clark, 2001)

Basehor-Linwood Virtual Charter School – Kansas (Clark, 2000, Clark, 2001)

Florida Virtual School (Friend & Johnston, 2005)

Virtual High School Global Consortium (Pape, Adams, & Ribeiro, 2005)


Alabama Online High School (Clark, 2001) (Clark, 2000)

University of California UC College Prep Initiative (Clark, 2001; Watson, Winograd, & Kalmon, 2004)

University of Nebraska Independent Study High School Online Diploma Program (Clark, 2000)


Arkansas Virtual High School (Clark, 2001)

Hawaii E-School (Clark, 2001)

Kentucky Virtual High School (Clark, 2000)

Louisiana Virtual Classroom (Clark, 2001)

North Dakota Division of Independent Study (Clark, 2001)

West Virginia Virtual School (Clark, 2001)

Pre-2000 (first referenced in a 2000 publication, but could have began operating earlier)

Babbage Net School (Clark, 2000)

Internet Academy – Federal Way, Washington Public Schools (Clark, 2000)

Mindquest – Bloomington, Minnesota Public Schools (Clark, 2000)

ZipStar Academy (Clark, 2000)


Hawaii E-Charter (Clark, 2001)

Idaho Virtual High School (Clark, 2001)

Illinois Virtual High School (Clark, 2000)

Pennsylvania Virtual Charter School (Clark, 2001; Watson, Winograd, & Kalmon, 2004)

Michigan Virtual High School (Clark, 2000)

New Mexico Virtual School (Clark, 2001)

Wisconsin Virtual School (Winograd, & Kalmon, 2004)

Pre-2001 (first referenced in a 2001 publication, but could have began operating earlier)

Abbington Hill School (Clark, 2001)

Academic Systems (Clark, 2001)

Alpha-Omega Academy On (Clark, 2001)

Birdville Virtual School (Clark, 2001)

Brigham Young University Independent Study (Clark, 2001)

CAL Online – Clovis Unified Schools, CA (Clark, 2001)

ChildU – Weston, FL (Clark, 2001)

Clintondale Virtual High School (Clark, 2001)

Clonlara Compuhigh (Clark, 2001)

Compuhigh Online High School (Clark, 2001)

Cumberland County Schools Web Academy (Clark, 2001)

Cyberschool – Lane County Schools, Eugene, OR (Clark, 2001)

Delta Cyber School (Clark, 2001)

Dennison On-Line Internet School (Clark, 2001)

Duncanville Independent School District’s Virtual School (Clark, 2001)

eBranch – Spring Branch Independent School District (Clark, 2001)

eEducation (Clark, 2001)

eSchool – Plano Independent School District (Clark, 2001)

Eldorado Academy (Clark, 2001)

Electronic Charter School (Clark, 2001)

Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow (Clark, 2001)

Evergreen Internet Academy (Clark, 2001)

Francis Virtual School (Clark, 2001)

Garden Schools – Branson, MO (Clark, 2001)

Gwinnett County Online Campus (Clark, 2001)

Houston Independent School District’s Virtual School (Clark, 2001)

Indiana University High School (Clark, 2001)

Intelligent Education, Inc. (Clark, 2001)

International High School (Clark, 2001)

Internet Home School.Com – Prescott, AZ (Clark, 2001)

JeffcoNet Academy (Clark, 2001)

Juneau Cyber School (Clark, 2001)

KeystoneVirtual High School (Clark, 2001)

Lancaster-Lebanon Intermediate Unit 13 – Pennsylvania (Clark, 2001)

Monte Vista On-line Academy (Clark, 2001)

Minnesota Distance Learning Academy (Clark, 2001)

NCS Learn (Clark, 2001)

NetSchool – Hillsboro Schools, OR (Clark, 2001)

Northwest Cyberschool (Clark, 2001)

Oak Meadow Online School (Clark, 2001)

Oakland Virtual Connection (Clark, 2001)

Odyssey Charter School (Clark, 2001)

Oklahoma State University Extension, K12 Distance Learning Academy (Clark, 2001)

Regina Coeli Academy (Clark, 2001)

Rock Hill School District #3 Virtual High School (Clark, 2001)

Salem-Keizer Online (Clark, 2001)

Scholar Classical Tutorials (Clark, 2001)

Scholars’ Online Academy – Tucson, AZ (Clark, 2001)

SeeUonline – Matanuska-Susitna Schools, Palmer, AK (Clark, 2001)

Southern Oregon Online School (Clark, 2001)

Southwest Missouri State University eHighSchool (Clark, 2001)

Spring (Texas) Independent School District’s eBranch (Clark, 2001)

Stanford University, Education Program for Gifted Youth (Clark, 2001)

Sycamore Tree Online (Clark, 2001)

Texas Virtual School (Clark, 2001)

The Einstein Academy Charter School (Clark, 2001)

The Potter’s School (Clark, 2001)

The Trent Schools – Bloomington, IN (Clark, 2001)

University of Missouri-Columbia High School (Clark, 2001)

University of Texas High School (Clark, 2001)

Vilas Interactive Long Distance Alternative School

Virtual Greenbush – Kansas (Clark, 2001)

Virtual School @ Liverpool (Clark, 2001)

Virtual High School @ Prince William County Schools (Clark, 2001)

Western Pennsylvania Cyber Charter School (Clark, 2001)

Willoway Cybershool (Clark, 2001)

WISE Internet High School – Richard Milburn School (Clark, 2001)


Colorado Online Learning (Clark, 2001)

Idaho Digital Learning Academy (Watson, Winograd, & Kalmon, 2004)

Maryland Virtual Learning Community (Clark, 2001)


Virtual Schools Pilot – Texas (Watson, Winograd, & Kalmon, 2004)

Pre-2004 (first referenced in a 2004 publication, but could have began operating earlier)

Connections Academy program (x2) – Colorado (Watson, Winograd, & Kalmon, 2004)

Connections Academy program – Wisconsin (Watson, Winograd, & Kalmon, 2004)

Florida Connections Academy (Watson, Winograd, & Kalmon, 2004)

Florida Virtual Academy (Watson, Winograd, & Kalmon, 2004)

Idaho Leadership Academy (Watson, Winograd, & Kalmon, 2004)

Idaho Virtual Academy (Watson, Winograd, & Kalmon, 2004)

Idaho Virtual High School (Watson, Winograd, & Kalmon, 2004)

K12, Inc. program (x3) – California (Watson, Winograd, & Kalmon, 2004)

K12, Inc program – Colorado (Watson, Winograd, & Kalmon, 2004)

K12, Inc program – Wisconsin (Watson, Winograd, & Kalmon, 2004)

Large Unit District Association – Illinois (Watson, Winograd, & Kalmon, 2004)

Ohio Virtual Academy (Watson, Winograd, & Kalmon, 2004)

TRECA – Ohio (Watson, Winograd, & Kalmon, 2004)

Note that I stopped with 2004, as that takes us up to the first Keeping Pace with K-12 Online Learning publication.


Barbour, M. K. (2011a). The promise and the reality: Exploring virtual schooling in rural jurisdictions. Education in Rural Australia, 21(1), 1-20.

Clark, T. (2000). Virtual high schools: State of the states – A study of virtual high school planning and preparation in the United States. Center for the Application of InformationTechnologies, Western Illinois University. Retrieved from

Clark, T. (2001). Virtual schools: Trends and issues – A study of virtual schools in the United States. San Francisco, CA: Western Regional Educational Laboratories. Retrieved from

Darrow, Rob (2010). A comparative study between online charter high schools and traditional high schools in California. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, California State University, Fresno, CA.  Retrieved from

Watson, J. F., Winograd, K., & Kalmon, S. (2004). Keeping pace with K–12 online learning: A snapshot of state-level policy and practice. Naperville, IL: North Central Regional Educational Laboratory. Retrieved from

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