Virtual School Meanderings

March 28, 2023

[Spring Webinars] Interactive sessions with practical examples, Q&As and more!

Filed under: virtual school — Michael K. Barbour @ 10:08 pm
Tags: , , , , ,

Note these items from the folks at SoftChalk.

SC Email Banner
Hi Michael,
We’re thrilled to announce that registration is now open for SoftChalk webinars for spring. Join us for these interactive sessions to get all of your most important questions answered.
SoftChalk webinar calendar

We can’t wait to see you there.

The SoftChalk Team

Meet your trainer

Dana Thompson is a Trainer for SoftChalk Professional Services. She has a Master’s in Curriculum and Instruction from Webster University and has over twenty years of educational experience in Iowa, Kansas, Missouri and Texas.


SoftChalk, 1000 Central Pkwy N #269, San Antonio, Texas 78232, 1-877-638-2425

[Comunicar 75] Youth, gender identity and power in digital platforms

Filed under: virtual school — Michael K. Barbour @ 8:08 pm
Tags: , , , ,

Another new issue alert – and again no K-12 distance, online, or blended learning specific articles.  But lots of content that may be of interest to readers.

Problems? View in browser

Published Issues
Comunicar 74:

Education for digital citizenship: Algorithms, automation and communication

Comunicar 73:

Future Education: Prospective for sustainability and social justice

Comunicar 72:

The disinformation society: The impact of fake news on the public sphere

Next Issues
Comunicar 76:

Neurotechnology in the classroom: Current research and future potential

Comunicar 77:

New languages and cultures. Teaching languages for global and digital communication

Comunicar 78:

Empowered and hyper(dis)connected audiences: Actors, contexts, experiences and educommunicative practices

We inform you that the latest issue of Comunicar, 75, has been recently published with the suggestive title: Youth, gender identity and power in digital platforms. As on previous occasions, the journal has a monographic section and a wide variety of items in its miscellaneous section. All articles are available full text and free of charge on our official website.

Onlife identity: The question of gender and age in teenagers’ online behaviour
Sara Serrate-González | Alberto Sánchez-Rojo | Luis-E. Andrade-Silva | José-Manuel Muñoz-Rodríguez

Even if they don’t say it to you, it hurts too: Internalized homonegativity in LGBTQ+ cyberbullying among adolescents
Mónica Ojeda | Esperanza Espino | Paz Elipe | Rosario del-Rey

Gendered perspectives on digital skills and digital activities: Comparing non-binary and binary youth
David De-Coninck | Leen d’Haenens

Feminism, gender identity and polarization in TikTok and Twitter
Simón Peña-Fernández | Ainara Larrondo-Ureta | Jordi Morales-i-Gras

Selfies and videos of teenagers: The role of gender, territory, and sociocultural level
Uxía Regueira | Ángela González-Villa | Esther Martínez-Piñeiro

Let’s talk series: Binge-watching vs. marathon. The duality in the consumption of episodes from the Grounded Theory
Eva Martínez-Serrano | Diana Gavilan | Gema Martínez-Navarro

Digital media use on school civic engagement: A parallel mediation model
Camila Contreras | Josefina Rivas | Rosemberg Franco | Maryluz Gómez-Plata | B. Paula Luengo-Kanacri

Psychosocial factors and low-risk behaviour in ICT use among adolescents
Sara Malo-Cerrato | Maria-de-las-Mercedes Martín-Perpiñá | Maria-Gràcia Cornellà-Font

The student self-assessment paradigm in MOOC: An example in Chinese higher education
Tingting Duan | Binghui Wu

Female political leadership styles as shown on Instagram during COVID-19
Virginia García-Beaudoux | Salomé Berrocal | Orlando D’Adamo | Leandro Bruni

Clarivate - JCR -WOSScopusGoogle ScholarRedibFecytDialnet Métricas

Comunicar is a quarterly, bilingual Spanish-English research journal, with Chinese and Portuguese abstracts. Articles, authors and topics have a decidedly international outlook. The journal now has 30 years and has published 1940 research articles. The journal appears in 811 international databases, journal impact assessment platforms,selective directories,specialized portals and hemerographic catalogues… Rigorous and transparent blind system of manuscript evaluation, audited in RECYT, International Scientific Council and a public network of 1141 reviewers from 54 countries from all over the world. Professional management of manuscripts is undertaken via the OJS 3 platform, with ethical commitments that ensure transparency and timeliness, antiplagiarism (CrossCheck), alternative metrics (PlumX, Dimensions)… High visualization level powered by numerous search engines, DOIs, ORCID, dynamic pdfs, epub, XML… with connections to Mendeley, RefWorks, EndNote, Zotero and scientific social networks like Academia.Edu or ResearchGate. Comunicar specializes in educommunication: communication and education, ICT, audiences, new languages; there are specialized monographic editions on the most updated topics. It has a double format: print and online; The digital edition offers full text, open access for the entire scientific community and researchers around the world. In English and Spanish edited by Comunicar, a professional, non-profit association, veteran in Spain (34 years) in educommunication, which collaborates with multiple institutions and international universities. In active indexations in 2022, Comunicar is top worldwide: 2nd in the world in SCOPUS and 10th in the world in JCR (top 1% and 7% in the world; percentile 99% and 93%). In JCR-JIF it is Q1 in Education, in Communication and in Cultural Studies (1st in Spanish). In SJR is Q1 in Education, Communication and Cultural Studies (1st Spanish in all three areas). It is 1st in FECYT Metrics; 1st in DIALNET METRICS. In GOOGLE SCHOLAR METRICS is the 3rd journal indexed in Spanish in all areas; 2nd in REDIB (out of 1,199 journals).

We must ensure that you wish to continue to receive our news, communications, newsletters and promotions. Since we wish to keep you informed about any news produced in Comunicar Journal, we will understand that you wish to continue receiving our communications.

Follow us


[CJE/RCÉ] New notification from Canadian Journal of Education/Revue canadienne de l’éducation

This new issue notice showed up in my inbox late last week.

You have a new notification from Canadian Journal of Education/Revue canadienne de l’éducation:

An issue has been published.


Sharon Hu

Canadian Journal of Education | Revue canadienne de l’éducation

As you can see from the table of contents that I have re-posted below, no K-12 distance, online, and/or blended learning items in this issue.

Vol. 46 No. 1 (2023): Spring 2023 | Printemps 2023

Published: 2023-03-25


  • EditorialTransformational Opportunities through New(er) Stories: Research Addressing Educational Inequalities

    Jeannie Kerr
  • Éditorial

    Carole Fleuret


  • Achieving Equity in Graduation Rates and Other Indicators of Success for Indigenous Learners in Canada

    Dustin William Louie, Leona Prince
  • Indigenous Perspectives at the Cultural Interface: Exploring Student Achievement through School/Community-Based Interventions

    Frank Deer, Rebeca Heringer
  • Hospitality, Self-Determination, and Black Refugee Students in Manitoba

    Rebeca Heringer
  • Historical Empathy: A Cognitive-Affective Theory for History Education in Canada

    Sara Karn
  • Touchons du bois… l’école en forêt

    Catherine Mac Dermott
  • Pédagogie immersive expérientielle : aborder les loisirs inclusifs et thérapeutiques en interagissant avec des personnes résidant dans un foyer de soins

    Selma Zaiane-Ghalia, Aïcha Benimmas
  • Enseigner l’histoire à distance en contexte d’urgence pandémique : étude des pratiques déclarées des enseignants du secondaire au Québec

    Jean-Louis Jadoulle
  • Analyse de l’agentivité transformatrice dans une activité de robotique pédagogique impliquant la résolution collaborative de problèmes

    Raoul Kamga, Sylvie Barma, Margarida Romero

Book Reviews

  • Book Review: Troubling Truth and Reconciliation in Canadian Education: Critical Perspectives

    David D. Varis
  • Book Review: Wandering the Sociological Imagination: A Review of Canadian Sociologists in the First Person

    Nathaniel Coward
  • Book Review: A Research Agenda for Graduate Education

    Vander Tavares
  • Book Review: Finding a Place for Every Student: Inclusive Practices, Social Belonging, and Differentiated Instruction in Elementary Classrooms

    Sasha Nandlal

School Finance Is Unfair. This New Plan Would Help Fix It.

One of the root causes of school choice, one of the main historic drivers of K-12 online learning, is the need to financially benefit from the public purse.  As such, this is worth a serious read.


School Finance Is Unfair. This New Plan Would Help Fix It.

Image Image
Image Image

Thursday, March 23, 2023



School Finance Is Unfair. This New Plan Would Help Fix It.



TwitterEmail Address

School finance is unfair. Politicians should provide child’s school with the resources needed to support that child’s education. But some children live in areas that can (and do) adequately fund their schools, and others do not.

A recent report published by the Albert Shanker Institute explains this problem and proposes a plan to help fix it with a strategic use of federal funding. The report is authored by NEPC Fellow Bruce Baker of the University of Miami, Matthew Di Carlo of the Albert Shanker Institute, and NEPC Fellow Mark Weber of Rutgers University.

“This proposal, with full funding and compliance, would provide every school district with the estimated revenues necessary to reach the goal of average national outcomes in mathemat­ics and reading,” the authors write.

The goal is intentionally very modest. The price tag? $52 billion per year—or roughly double what the federal government currently provides to K-12 schools, which are funded overwhelmingly by state and local revenue. (About eight percent of K-12 funding is currently provided by the federal government.)

In return, state and local governments would be required, in order to participate in the program and receive the additional funding, to increase their contributions to K-12 funding by about 13 percent, or about $80 billion. But this 13 percent increase would not be required of all states and localities. The increases would be concentrated in areas that currently have the ability to contribute additional revenue to K-12 education (based on aggregate income and/or gross domestic product) but choose not to do so.

This approach to incentivizing contributions differs from current federal K-12 education spending policy. Federal funding presently takes student needs into account but does not consider the “fiscal effort” that local and/or state governments are willing to spend on meeting these needs.

Baker, Di Carlo, and Weber write:


Effort (and capacity) is an important piece of the school funding puzzle because some states’ economies are so small relative to their students’ needs that they are essentially unable to raise enough revenue to fund their schools adequately, whereas other states simply refuse to provide sufficient resources despite having the option to do so.

They continue, “California, Colorado, Florida, and North Carolina currently exhibit severe and widespread funding gaps despite having the means to rectify them.”

Other states, including New York and New Jersey, also have high aggregate incomes and gross domestic products, but they choose to use a relatively high share of those resources to fund education.

Unlike the new state and local funds, the new federal funding would, under the proposal, be concentrated in districts in 34 states where small economies and/or high expense levels (due to factors such as labor costs and/or higher student needs) make it very difficult to adequately fund education. States in this category include Arkansas, Kentucky, Maine, Mississippi, South Carolina, and West Virginia.

Participation in the new funding program would be voluntary. States with the capacity to increase funding could choose to opt out rather than to boost K-12 budgets to adequate levels. However, if every state in the nation chose to participate, the share of students in inadequately funded districts would decline from 55 percent (about 26 million students) to 0 percent. In addition, the program would reduce the funding gap between the highest and lowest poverty districts in each state by more than 60 percent.

“While a handful of states’ finance systems do a reasonably good job of providing adequate funding for all students, most do not,” Baker, Di Carlo, and Weber write, continuing:

Insofar as roughly 90 percent of all K-12 revenue comes from state and local sources, any serious effort to improve this situation will require substantial addi­tional investment from states and districts. The federal government cannot compel such investment directly, but it can play a crucial role in helping the students most in need, while also incentivizing new state and local investment by rewarding states that contrib­ute a reasonable fair share of their resources to public schools.


This newsletter is made possible in part by support provided by the Great Lakes Center for Education Research and Practice:


The National Education Policy Center (NEPC), a university research center housed at the University of Colorado Boulder School of Education, sponsors research, produces policy briefs, and publishes expert third-party reviews of think tank reports. NEPC publications are written in accessible language and are intended for a broad audience that includes academic experts, policymakers, the media, and the general public. Our mission is to provide high-quality information in support of democratic deliberation about education policy.  We are guided by the belief that the democratic governance of public education is strengthened when policies are based on sound evidence and support a multiracial society that is inclusive, kind, and just. Visit us at:


Copyright 2023 National Education Policy Center. All rights reserved.


Paperback “Privatization of Everything” Now Available

Filed under: virtual school — Michael K. Barbour @ 2:07 pm
Tags: , , , ,

This newsletter, and the associated book, is an interesting read through the lens of school choice and efforts from its proponents to turn education into a system that looks more like health care or prisons in the United States (as opposed to looking more like education systems in other nations).



The weekly newsletter for people who want the government to work for all of us, not just the wealthy few. Not a subscriber? Sign up here.

Your support makes our work possible. Please donate, we’d deeply appreciate it.

Privatization of Everything: Now in Paperback

The paperback edition of my 2021 book, The Privatization of Everything, is now available online at Bookshop (and other outlets) and in some bookstores. Its reappearance allows me to reflect on why we wrote the book in the first place.

If you peruse the index, you might wonder what an elementary school in Washington, D.C. has to do with the Food and Drug Administration, how our National Parks relate to parking meters in Chicago, why the history of Philadelphia’s water supply is connected to fare-free transit in Kansas City, or what Jonas Salk has to do with Sallie Mae.

What they have in common is the concept of the public: public schools, public spaces, public safety, public health, public investment for a common good.

The book is an argument intended to reclaim the idea of the public and reclaim our governments as tools of the public. It is a call to use public conversation and debate to define public goods, and to ensure those public goods remain under public—democratic—control.

Apparently, that word, public, upsets some people.

There’s a reason the name of former Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos turns up when discussing seemingly disparate efforts to obstruct the delivery of both covid-related healthcare services in Michigan and quality public education across the country. Turns out, they’re not so disparate. You’ll also find the cash of the Koch Brothers and the fingerprints of the right-wing American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) on legislation all over the country on issues as diverse as school privatization and environmental regulations.

The forces aligned against the public interest embrace a doctrine derived from the myth that government has no business doing anything the private sector can do and anyway “does better”—cheaper, faster, more efficiently. They do not see the potential of government as an expression of democratic will, but rather as an obstruction to the marketplace. They believe privatization—of schools, water systems, prisons, and so on—is the solution to our problems.

What is privatization? Here’s how we define it in the book:

“Privatization is the transfer of control over public goods to private hands. Sometimes this happens during procurement—the outsourcing of public services to a private contractor. In other cases, it’s due to austerity—reducing public funding of a vital public good and letting private options take over. Or it can happen through deregulation—when we eliminate or fail to enforce public control through important regulatory safeguards for consumers, workers, or the environment. In all these ways, privatization is a transfer of power over our own destiny, as individuals and as a nation, to unelected, unaccountable, and inscrutable corporations and their executives.”

As we argue in the book, privatization is primarily a political strategy—one designed to separate us from public goods, our government, and each other.

And privatization is pervasive. It reaches into all corners of our lives—from the very water we drink, to the food we eat. It’s so ubiquitous, we don’t even realize it.

After I made a presentation to an organization about the book, one staff member told me she began to think differently about privatization. “I was really struck by how the invisibility and prevalence of privatization ends up undermining support for public goods.”

That’s why I hope this book will become a useful tool—a desk reference, a call to arms, a playbook, an argument to organize around, and—in the stories of those who have confronted privatization whenever it threatens a public good—an inspiration.

With the paperback version, I hope that we can make the book more affordable and the ideas more accessible to a wider audience. We hope the book can help instigate or center discussions about how to counter efforts at privatization, and how to restore faith in the possibility of government as a force for good.

In our newsletter next week, we will outline several concrete ways the book can be used—by activists, labor unions, students, teachers, elected officials, candidates—and ways we can facilitate that with presentations, bulk discounts, and more.

Donald Cohen
Executive Director




In the Public Interest
1305 Franklin St., Suite 501
Oakland, CA 94612
United States
Next Page »

Blog at