Virtual School Meanderings

July 25, 2017

More Media Comparison Studies in K-12 Online Learning

Filed under: Uncategorized — Michael Barbour @ 10:09 am

While I applaud the federal government and the REL system for doing more research into K-12 distance, online, and blended learning – and the focus on online credit recovery, given how much it is used is admirable, but do we really need yet another media comparison study in the field?

Does online learning work for LAUSD students taking makeup classes? Study aims to find out

Researchers have received a $3.26-million federal grant to study the effectiveness of online academic credit recovery programs — the kind that allow students to make up failed classes and graduate on time — in the Los Angeles Unified School District.

The grant, from the research arm of the U.S. Department of Education, will pay for the American Institutes for Research, a nonprofit research group, to study how online makeup courses for Algebra 1 and ninth-grade English compare with retaking the class in person.

To continue reading, visit http://www.latimes.com/local/education/la-me-edu-credit-recovery-grant-20170714-story.html

The results will be one of three things:

  1. there is no difference between online credit recovery and traditional credit recovery
  2. there is a positive difference in favour of online credit recovery over traditional credit recovery
  3. there is a positive difference in favour of traditional credit recovery over online credit recovery

However, the overall conclusion of what this tells us will be nothing!  In these two situations, there are so many things that are different that one cannot attribute the fact one is better or worse simply to the medium in which the credit recovery is delivered.

Essentially, this is a replication by AIR of their studies of online credit recovery in Chicago.  In that earlier study, according to this article, the researchers found:

“They determined the online course materials to be more rigorous and found that 76% of face-to-face students passed their credit recovery courses, compared with 66% of online students, Heppen said. But students in the face-to-face classes also scored better on an algebra assessment that AIR developed, and the two groups graduated at the same rates three years later.”

So did the online students perform worse because the course materials were harder?  Or did the researchers conclude that the online course materials were harder because more students failed (which would be a false conclusion)?  What kind of human support was available to the students in both groups?  What kind of interaction did the students in both groups have with their teacher or various resources?  How much time did each group spend on the content?  How were both conditions designed, delivered, and supported? How much was spent on providing the experience for each group?  These are just some of the questions that would need to be answered to actually tell us anything meaningful.

The fact that the face-to-face group did better in terms of passing the course and on a contrived assessment, and both groups did the same in the long-term tells us nothing.  Other than the federal government through the REL system continues to waste money on K-12 distance, online, and blended learning research that could be going to answer meaningful, useful research questions.

October 31, 2016

Statistics for October 2016

Filed under: Uncategorized — Michael Barbour @ 11:59 pm

This entry is being posted back-dated.

Over the past month there were 4281 hits to this blog from 2124 different visitors, which is up by about 1000 hits and 200 visitors.

Like last month, can’t seem to access the old statistics page – which means I can’t copy and paste (and I can only get data from the past 10 months).  So once again there is not a lot to report this month.

Finally, the statistics from my old blog site (which still does generate some traffic)…

(more…)

October 1, 2016

[L_OSBC_Announce] FW: Open Textbooks

Filed under: Uncategorized — Michael Barbour @ 12:03 pm

For my British Columbian readers (and others may be interested)…

I invite you to share this with your colleagues either by forwarding the email or by printing it and posting it in your common area.

Thank you,

Michael Cochrane
Educational Services Support Manager
Open School BC
Education resources and services
250 356-9456 FAX:250 356-6036
Toll Free 1-888-883-4766
Visit us online at: www.openschool.bc.ca
You can also follow us on Twitter: @_osbc
Like us on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/OpenSchoolBC

Please see the Minister’s press release from this morning.   https://archive.news.gov.bc.ca/releases/news_releases_2013-2017/2016AVED0096-001820.htm

_______________________________________________
L_OSBC_Announce mailing list
L_OSBC_Announce@lists.gov.bc.ca
https://lists.gov.bc.ca/mailman/listinfo/l_osbc_announce

July 15, 2016

NCVPS E-lert for July 14, 2016 – Summer Edition VI —

From yesterday’s inbox…

Districts and Charter Schools,
Please forward this E-lert to your school-level stakeholders. We often have enrollment information for counselors, grades for data managers, tips for lab facilitators, announcements for testing coordinators, and strategies for school leaders, all of whom support your district’s and school’s e-learning efforts. If you are having difficulty viewing this email, you may view it as a web page here.
NCVPS E-lert for July 14, 2016 – Summer Edition VI

Calendar Check
2016
June 20: Start of the Summer Session
June 24: Last Day to Register
July 1: Last Day to Drop
August 12: Last Day of Summer Session
August 18: Final Grades Posted
See the complete NCVPS calendar at this link.

Essential Links

NCVPS Is Hiring Teachers

Celebrate & Connect

Connect with us on Twitter!Find us here. Tweet to us on Twitter at @ncvps or with the hashtag #ncvps.

E-lert Subscription
If you are not on the E-lert subscription list, but would like to be, please add your name toour list here.

Current E-lert News

What’s New?
what's new pic
New This Week

Health and PE forms in Spanish

Important From Last Week!
In addition, be sure to check out all of our tips and reminders in this week’s e-lert.

SummerUpdatesSummer 2016 Updates
What’s New?
We have posted our third progress report today in the NCVPS registration system.  See the details below.
Please remember that the last day to drop students for summer was Friday, July 1. However, schools can still withdraw students through the end of summer session. We will issue a W (withdrawal) grade for those students. Those enrollments will still count in the district’s or charter school’s allotment totals, but there is no penalty for students.
Important Dates
Start Date: Monday, June 20
Day 3 Status Report: June 24. Find this document in the registration system. It will show which students have not logged in yet. Please contact those students.
Last Day to Register: Friday, June 24
LastDropDay*Last Day to Drop: Friday, July 1 – Some districts are on an abbreviated summer schedule for staff by this date. Be sure your summer students know who to contact in the district if they want to be dropped. NCVPS cannot drop students. This is an important date to keep on your calendar. This 1 is the last day districts and schools can drop students with no penalty for the student and no cost for the district or charter.
Progress Reports Posted: June 30, July 7, 14, 21, 28, August 4, 11. Find these progress reports in the registration system.
End Date: Friday, August 12
Final Grades Posted: Thursday, August 18
Summer 2016 Grade Reporting
CurrentPostedReportsWhat’s Currently Posted?
Our third progress report is now posted in the NCVPS registration system. Look for the report titled “Summer 2016 Third Progress Report Due July 12, 2016.”
What’s Scheduled Next?
Our next progress report will be posted on July 21.
Reporting Overview
 
Progress Reports
See how your students are progressing! We post progress reports every two weeks in the registration system.
Grade Reports 
Our grade reports are weighted grades similar to school report cards.
Student Status (No-Show) Reports 
NCVPS posts student status reports after the third and seventh days of class. These reports indicate if students have logged in or not to their NCVPS courses. These reports are early warning indicators for schools.
Additional Grade Reporting Resources
Parent Observer Access in Canvas

ObserverAccess

 
NCVPS is excited to announce that parents and guardians can now view their students’ progress in our Canvas courses. Observers have limited permissions that allow them to view what is happening in a course without interrupting the flow of daily course communication.
Important Note: Parents will need their students’ login information to create their observer access. NCVPS will not be able to supply this information to them. Parents will need to get these details either from the local school or from their students. For more details, view our Observer Access web page here.
 
Summer Resources
GettingStartedGuidesGetting Started as an NCVPS Student
Follow this link to see our checklist for students. Be sure your summer school students are aware of this link. It will get them off to a great start this summer.
Getting Started for Schools
Follow this link to see our checklist for school. This has all your details to run a successful summer program.
Calendars
Follow this link to our summer calendar!

SpanishPEformsHealth and Physical Education forms Now in Spanish

We have a great comprehensive guide for our Health and Physical Education courses.  If you’ve not seen this resource, please check out the web page here.
We have recently added a Spanish language version to the page. We hope this helps!

FallUpdatesFall 2016 Updates

Registration Details
Follow this link to our registration system.
If you need access, contact our Virtual Support Center here.
Please remember that there is only one login per school.  If your school already has access, you will need to share the login username and password.
If you are new to the NCVPS registration system or need a refresher, the guide at this link will help.
FallReportCardsFall Report Cards Update
NCVPS is transitioning all of its courses to the Canvas learning management system. Currently, Canvas does not have the functionality to let schools calculate weighted marking period grades.
In the past, NCVPS has posted grades in the NCVSP registration system following this process:
  • Every two weeks we post an unweighted progress report.
  • We post our first weighted grade report at midterm. This is our 1st marking period grade, and it’s weighted 37.5%.
  • We then post the 2nd marking period grade (37.5%) at the end of term, along with the final exam grade (25%) and final grade.
  • For EOC and CTE courses, we report the final classwork grade (75%), and schools calculate in the exam grades (25%).
Starting in Fall 2016, NCVPS will post grades in the NCVPS registration system following our new process:
  • Cumulative progress reports every two weeks.
  • Final class average at the end of term (75%), along with the final exam grade (25%), and final grade.
  • For EOC and CTE courses, we report the final classwork grade (75%), and schools calculate in the exam grades (25%).
The cumulative progress reports are a very accurate indicator of exactly how a student is performing in the course. This is actually how we posted grades in our first two years, and it’s also how we still post summer grades.
Calendars
We have published our 2016-2017 Academic Year calendar. See all the dates here!
Parent Observer Access in Canvas
NCVPS is excited to announce that parents and guardians can now view their students’ progress in our Canvas courses. Observers have limited permissions that allow them to view what is happening in a course without interrupting the flow of daily course communication.
Important Note: Parents will need their students’ login information to create their observer access. NCVPS will not be able to supply this information to them. Parents will need to get these details either from the local school or from their students. For more details, view our Observer Access web page here.
Catalog Updates
Our catalogs for the 2016-2017 Academy Year have been posted. See the listings here. We have updated catalog information below.
APComputersAP Computer Science Principles – New Course Offering
NCVPS will offer the newly developed AP Computer Science course. Read more about this new course at the College Board’s website.
APPhysicsLabsAP Physics Lab Materials
To align with revised College Board requirements for AP Physics 1 and 2, we are revising the labs in these courses for the 2016-2017 school year. Students will require materials for these hands-on labs. We will post a list of required materials on our course description page later this summer.

Tech Updates
Password Reset
If you have had your password reset, the new password will not expire unless you have reset it. If you have forgotten what your password was reset to, you can look up the help desk ticket to access the new password or click on “Forgot Password”.
Course Issues
When requesting help regarding a course it always easier for tech support to respond quickly if we have the specific section name, for example:
CourseSec01Sum16
Opening a Ticket with the Virtual Support Center
When opening a ticket with the virtual support center, please always include the following:
  • Student’s first & last name
  • PowerSchool ID number (This will help ensure we have the correct student)
  • School name (full name, i.e. Eastern Mills High School, not EMHS)
  • Course name – if the student is already enrolled,  include specific section, i.e. CourseSec01Sum16.
If you need a new student account for a student who is new to PowerSchool (not just transferring schools), include the following:
  • Your full school name (i.e. Eastern Mills High School, not EMHS)
  • The student’s first and last name
  • The student’s PowerSchool ID number
  • The student’s email address
  • The student’s phone number (the contact number this will be in PowerSchool)
  • Does the student have an IEP? Yes/No
  • Does the student have a 504 Plan? Yes/No
Replying to a Support Center Ticket
 
After you submit a ticket to the Virtual Support Center, you will receive a ticket confirmation and resolution via email. To expedite your resolution, please do not reply to the email. The email will have a link in it for your response. Please click on that link (see below).
This will put the ticket right back in the queue of the person who is working on your ticket. If you reply to the email, then that will have to be manually put into the ticket, and that can delay the process by several hours.
Student Email Confirmations in Canvas and Blackboard
In Canvas:
Click on “settings” on your name in the upper right side of your course.
Click on “Add Email Address” under Ways to Contact on the right of screen.
Add your correct email if Canvas is not displaying your correct email.
Click on “Register email.”
Click the star next to your correct email address.
In Blackboard:
Click on students name in the upper right side of your BB course
Click on setting
Click on Personal Information
Click on Edit Personal Information to update e-mail if it’s incorrect.
Scroll to bottom and Submit
Student Logins:
Students, are you having difficulty locating your class? During the 2016 Summer semester, NCVPS will be offering courses in two learning management systems, Canvas and Blackboard. If you are unsure which platform your course is being offered in, please follow this link:

http://www.ncvps.org/student-bbmoodle-login/

javaflashUpdatesJAVA and Flash Updates
Please update your Java to Version Java 8, Update 91.Head to http://java.com/en/download/manual.jsp and follow the instructions from there.

Please go to the following link to update Adobe Flash Player to the latest Version 21.0.0.242
http://get.adobe.com/flashplayer/

Blackboard Instant Messaging (BBIM)
 
Students will need to click on the BBIM link in their class and create an ID and password that they will remember. NCVPS does not issue BBIM logins nor do we store this information.
Bookmark NCVPS Login Pages
 
Many students visit our homepage to log in to their courses. It is a best practice to bookmark the actual login pages for both Moodle and Blackboard. Please have students and lab facilitators bookmark the following pages:
In addition, many school administrators visit our homepage to log in to our registration system or Virtual Support Center. Please bookmark both of these pages in your web browser:
Virtual Support Center: http://www.help.ncvps.org/
 
Tech Requirements
 
For additional information, please see our Tech Requirements:
http://ncvps.org/technology-requirements

HireDesignersNCVPS Hiring Course Developers
NCVPS is hiring course developers, writers, and designers.
Please forward this message to colleagues in your school or district who may be interested.
Thank you!

Course Catalogues
NCVPS Courses
NCVPS offers over 150 different courses, including advanced placement, electives, traditional, honors, core, STEM, occupational course of study, and credit recovery courses.

VendorApprovedUpdatesVendor Approved Courses

In addition to NCVPS courses, North Carolina public schools also have a list of approved third-party vendor courses that they may choose from for virtual classes. Please follow this link to see the list of approved vendor courses. More on the vendor approval process can be found here.

Here are the newest approved vendor courses: (Course Title – Vendor)

Courses – Vendor
Edgenuity – MS Math 6
Edgenuity – MS Math 7
Edgenuity – MS Math 8
Edgenuity – MS Social Studies 6
Edgenuity – MS Social Studies 7
Edgenuity – MS Spanish 1
Edgenuity – MS Spanish 2
Edmentum – AP Literature
Edmentum – Career Management
Edmentum – Entrepreneurship 1
Edmentum – Principles of Business
OdysseyWare – English 4
North Carolina Virtual Public School
1017 Main Campus Drive, Partners I Bldg.,
SUITE 3900, Raleigh, NC 27606
Phone:  919-513-8550   |  Fax:  919-513-2557  |

STAY CONNECTED

Like us on Facebook   Follow us on Twitter

Adam Renfro
Outreach and Support Coordinator
North Carolina Virtual Public School
910.644.0757

North Carolina Virtual Public School | 1017 Main Campus Drive, Partners I Bldg., 
SUITE 3900 | Raleigh | NC | 27606
adam.renfro@ncpublicschools.gov
NCVPS Virtual Support Center:  http://www.help.ncvps.org/~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Note: All email correspondence to and from this address is subject to public review under the NC Public Records Law. As a result, messages may be monitored by and disclosed to third parties.

December 2, 2015

Giving Tuesday

Filed under: Uncategorized — Michael Barbour @ 8:01 pm

And yet another one from Tuesday’s inbox…

Like  Tweet  Pin  +1
SpeakUpOpenSlider
SUcalendar 2015 survey

Happy Giving Tuesday!

After giving thanks on Thanksgiving, it’s time to give back with #GivingTuesday! Today, charities, families, businesses, community centers, and students around the world are coming together for one common purpose: to celebrate generosity and to give.

For #GivingTuesday we ask our Speak Up family to donate 15 minutes of your time for the future of education. Make a difference today by expressing your views about education, technology, and college and career ready skills through the Speak Up 2015 National Research Project. Click here to take the survey.

We want everyone to have a voice in the future of how technology is used in our schools – please share the Speak Up survey with your students, teachers, parents, administrators, community organizers, friends, and anyone who has a passion for improving education: bit.ly/SU15survey

Thank you for your continued support of Speak Up! To learn more about #GivingTuesday, visit their official website.

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