Virtual School Meanderings

June 16, 2019

EBSCO Alerts

ebscoFirst, I received the alert for virtual school, but there were no relevant items.

Next, I also received the alert for cyber schools, but again there were no relevant items.

Finally, I did not receive the alert for K-12 online learning.

So nothing to report this week.

June 9, 2019

EBSCO Alerts

ebscoFirst, I did not receive the alert for virtual school.

Next, I did receive the alert for cyber schools, but there were no relevant items.

Finally, the alert for K-12 online learning.

1. TI- Designing for Young Learners.
AU- Borup, Jered1,2
AU- Archambault, Leanna3,4,5
JN- Library Technology Reports
PD- May/Jun2019, Vol. 55 Issue 4, p17-21
PG- 5p
DT- 20190501
PT- Article
AB- The article offers information on the K–12 online learning and K–12 online teacher educator preparation. Topics discussed include importance of personalized learning when online settings are designed and delivered to younger learners; online learning management system that contain content pages, assessment tools, gradebook, and teacher announcements; and some online platforms for K–12 teachers such as Google Classroom, Google Sites, and Edmodo.
DE- Online education
SU- Learning Management System
SU- Teachers
SU- Edmodo (Company)
SU- Google (Web resource)
AD- 1Professor-in-charge of George Mason University’s Blended and Online Learning in Schools master’s.
AD- 2PhD at Brigham Young University.
AD- 3Associate professor of learning design and technology within the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College at Arizona State University.
AD- 4Program coordinator for the educational technology master’s program at ASU.
AD- 5Middle school English language arts in the Clark County School District in Las Vegas, Nevada..
IS- 00242586
AN- 136546074

June 2, 2019

EBSCO Alerts

ebscoFirst, the alert for virtual school.

1. TI- Developing Pedagogy and Course Design Skills in Novice Virtual School Teachers in Australia
AU- Cavanaugh, Cathy
AU- Roe, Meredith
SO- Journal of Online Learning Research, v5 n1 p7-22 2019
VI- 5
IP- 1
DT- 20190101
YR- 2019
SP- 7
EP- 22
PG- 16
PT- Academic Journal
PT- Report
SU- Foreign Countries; National Standards; Online Courses; Communities of Practice; Computer Simulation; Networks; Novices; Teaching Methods; Faculty Development; Teaching Skills; Required Courses; College Admission; Secondary School Teachers; Rural Areas; Low Income; Access to Education; Instructional Design; Evaluators
GE- Australia
SU- Higher Education; Postsecondary Education; Secondary Education
AB- Ten secondary schools in a large state-wide education system initiated a virtual school network to address the lack of upper secondary school courses for university entry in smaller high schools. This article highlights the yearlong professional learning program designed to prepare a cohort of classroom teachers, who were novices to teaching online, for developing and teaching fully-online courses. In accordance with program goals, data include pre/post measures of teachers’ capabilities and external course reviews using the iNACOL National Standards for Quality Online Teaching. Results show that teachers grew in all standards of their self-reported online teaching skills, and reviewers rated two-thirds of the 21 quality items as being Very Satisfactory and Satisfactory for a majority of the courses prior to teachers beginning to teach students. Findings indicate areas of emphasis for the ongoing work of the cohort’s professional learning community.
LA- English
IS- 2374-1473
FT- Y
AN- EJ1208817
TY- EJ
LV- Available online
EM- 2019
RV- Y

2. TI- A Correlational Study of Student Demographic Characteristics, Academic Achievement, and Virtual Course Completion for High School Students Enrolled in a Virtual School Program in Southeast Texas
AU- Taylor, Lakiesha R.
SO- ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, Lamar University – Beaumont
DT- 20180101
YR- 2018
PG- 80
PT- Dissertation
SU- High School Students; Student Characteristics; Academic Achievement; Academic Persistence; Electronic Learning; Predictor Variables; Ethnicity; Sex; Grade Point Average; Grade 9; Grade 10; Grade 11; Grade 12
GE- Texas
SU- High Schools; Secondary Education; Grade 9; Junior High Schools; Middle Schools; Grade 10; Grade 11; Grade 12
AB- With a steady increase of virtual learning courses taught throughout K-12 education, limited empirical research exists to allow educational leaders and policy makers the ability to accurately identify student demographic characteristics that correlate to the acquisition of virtual course credit (Barbour, 2009). The purpose of this quantitative study was to test the relationships between student demographic characteristics, academic achievement, and virtual course completion for 9-12 grade high school students enrolled in a virtual school program offered by a large school district in Southeast Texas (n=500). The predictor variables (grade level, ethnicity, gender, and cumulative GPA) and the outcome variable, course completion, were extracted from deidentified data within the student records. A Spearman rho correlation test was conducted for each research question to determine the relationships between the predictor variables and course completion (Creswell, 2014). The results confirmed there is a statistically significant relationship between all of the predictor variables and course completion. Recommendations for future research include the collection of data from multiple school sites, a more diverse student population and a change in how the variables were measured using archival data. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page: http://www.proquest.com/en-US/products/dissertations/individuals.shtml.]
LA- English
IB- 978-0-438-70263-9
AN- ED593146
TY- ED
LV- Not available from ERIC
EM- 2019

3. TI- Connections Academy: Full-Time Virtual School for Grades K-12. Efficacy Research Report
AU- Pearson
SO- Pearson
DT- 20180403
YR- 2018
PG- 36
PT- Report
SU- Virtual Classrooms; Online Courses; Public Schools; Repetition; Required Courses; Academic Achievement; Outcomes of Education; Elementary Schools; Middle Schools; High Schools; Educational Objectives; Program Design; Student Motivation; Learner Engagement; Intervention
SU- Elementary Education; Middle Schools; Secondary Education; Junior High Schools; High Schools
AB- Connections Academy is a full-time, tuition-free, virtual public school program that served more than 70,000 K-12 students in 27 states in the 2017-2018 school year. Pearson sought to explore how Connections Academy schools perform compared to the alternatives. This Research Report presents findings from two research studies: one quasi-experimental study with Connections Academy students enrolled in GradPoint credit recovery courses during 2015-2016; and one quasi-experimental matched comparison study with students enrolled in a representative sample of Connections Academy schools during the 2013-2014 to 2015-2016 academic years. Our aim in using correlational and comparative study designs was to seek out possible relationships between the use of Connections Academy and students’ performance to identify areas of focus for potential future research using more rigorous causal study designs. The report also summarizes the context surrounding the findings, including the research that informed the design and development of the product, the history of the product in the market, how educators use the product, and its intended outcomes. The findings are inseparable from their surrounding context and the design of the studies that produced them. To learn more about these elements, follow the links to our Technical Reports in the Research studies section.
LA- English
AN- ED592507
TY- ED
LV- Not available from ERIC
EM- 2019

4. TI- Exploring Special Education Teachers’ Perception of the Use of Data to Inform Instruction in the Virtual Educational Environment: A Case Study
AU- Rapson, Alicia Paige
SO- ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, Northcentral University
DT- 20180101
YR- 2018
PG- 112
PT- Dissertation
SU- Special Education Teachers; Virtual Classrooms; Data; Information Utilization; Teacher Attitudes; Academic Achievement; Decision Making; Instructional Effectiveness; Special Education
AB- Effective instruction derives from collecting and analyzing student data. Data collection can be a series of observations, or progress monitoring assessments, where students are assessed regularly on a targeted skill to see if a program or instructional model is effective, or any other type of collected information that reveals knowledge to educators, about the students they teach. Special Education teachers need to be informed of their student’s progress or lack of progress, so it is known how students are responding to intervention services. In the virtual setting, where data is easily accessible, special education teachers can use a variety of data collections to gain a better understanding of the students they teach. The purpose of this qualitative case study is to explore special education teachers’ perception of the use of student academic achievement data in the virtual educational environment to inform instruction. This study utilized a survey and questionnaire, to explore their current understanding of the uses of data. There were 7 special education teachers surveyed to gain a better understanding of their usage of data and how they use the information to make educational decisions. This study demonstrated and explored the perceptions of virtual special education teachers use of data to inform their instruction to students. The findings for this study will assist virtual school leaders in developing trainings and continued professional development opportunities for special education teachers related to data and data utilization. A descriptive interpretive analysis was used to summarize the findings of the interviews. The results of this study indicated that professional development and additional trainings will be helpful to teachers when trying to provide effective instruction in the virtual environment. Some of the trainings that are recommended are how sharing data is important and what to do with data once it is collected. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page: http://www.proquest.com/en-US/products/dissertations/individuals.shtml.]
LA- English
IB- 978-0-438-66699-3
AN- ED592309
TY- ED
LV- Not available from ERIC
EM- 2019

Next, the alert for cyber schools.

1. TI- Do Testing Conditions Explain Cyber Charter Schools’ Failing Grades?
AU- Beck, Dennis
AU- Watson, Angela R.
AU- Maranto, Robert
SO- American Journal of Distance Education, v33 n1 p46-58 2019
VI- 33
IP- 1
DT- 20190101
YR- 2019
SP- 46
EP- 58
PG- 13
PT- Academic Journal
PT- Report
SU- Virtual Classrooms; Online Courses; Charter Schools; Low Achievement; Reading Achievement; Mathematics Achievement; Value Added Models; Scores; Reading Tests; Mathematics Tests; Computer Assisted Testing; Academic Persistence; School Holding Power; Fatigue (Biology); Testing Problems; School Effectiveness
AB- Recent Center for Research on Education Outcomes (CREDO) analyses find that cyber charter schools in seventeen states show consistently low reading and mathematics value-added test scores compared to traditional public schools serving comparable students. This generally accords with prior research. We hypothesize that the relatively poor “measured” academic value-added of cyber charters reflects artificial testing conditions for students in those schools. Accordingly, we have collected testing information from the seventeen CREDO states. State-level analyses find that cyber student persistence, which likely indicates school quality, correlates moderately and significantly with the cyber student academic value-added as measured by CREDO. Further, we find evidence of lower cyber school value-added in states which permit cybers to use narrow testing windows, perhaps reflecting testing fatigue on the part of test-takers. We discuss implications, and suggest next steps for research exploring whether testing conditions affect measured cyber charter performance.
LA- English
IS- 0892-3647
AN- EJ1204478
TY- EJ
LV- Not available from ERIC
EM- 2019
RV- Y

2. TI- Examining the Complexities of Parental Engagement at an Online Charter High School: A Narrative Analysis Approach
AU- Borup, Jered
AU- Walters, Shea
AU- Call-Cummings, Megan
SO- International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, v20 n1 p94-110 Feb 2019
VI- 20
IP- 1
DT- 20190201
YR- 2019
SP- 94
EP- 110
PG- 17
PT- Academic Journal
PT- Report
SU- Parent Participation; Charter Schools; Virtual Classrooms; Online Courses; Educational Technology; Technology Uses in Education; Parent Attitudes; High Schools; Parent Role; Student Needs; Educational Methods
SU- High Schools; Secondary Education
AB- With the rapid growth of K-12 online learning opportunities, calls have come for more and better parental engagement to improve student engagement and reduce student attrition. In this article, we drew from a larger study to share rich narratives from three parents of students who required high levels of parental support for their online learning while enrolled at a charter cyber school. In the first narrative, a mother describes her experiences attempting to work with her son Ivan, who rejected her efforts and disobeyed rules while enrolled in the cyber school. The move from a brick-and-mortar school to the cyber school further strained their relationship and the mother was unprepared to manage Ivan’s learning. The second narrative focuses on how a mother attempted to support Matthew, who lacked self-regulation abilities. The mother who previously homeschooled Matthew, turned to the cyber school because she wanted “less on [her] shoulders” but underestimated the amount of support Matthew required and became frustrated at her lack of control over the pace and content of courses. The final narrative focuses on a mother who had two students enrolled in the cyber school. Each student exhibited different needs that required her to adapt the support strategies she used with Hannah, who procrastinated, and Karl, who lacked confidence. These narratives highlight some of the complexities parents navigate when engaging with their children’s online learning.
LA- English
IS- 1492-3831
FT- Y
AN- EJ1207452
TY- EJ
LV- Available online
EM- 2019
RV- Y

3. TI- Cyber Charter Schools and Growing Resource Inequality among Public Districts: Geospatial Patterns and Consequences of a Statewide Choice Policy in Pennsylvania, 2002-2014
AU- Mann, Bryan
AU- Baker, David P.
SO- American Journal of Education, v125 n2 p147-171 Feb 2019
VI- 125
IP- 2
DT- 20190201
YR- 2019
SP- 147
EP- 171
PG- 25
PT- Academic Journal
PT- Report
SU- Charter Schools; School Districts; Mass Media; Public Schools; Online Courses; Elementary Secondary Education; Electronic Learning; News Reporting; Instructional Effectiveness; School Choice; State Policy
GE- Pennsylvania
SU- Elementary Secondary Education
AB- An analysis from 2002 to 2014, aligning media reporting of the effectiveness of the fully online K-12 cyber charter school model with data on enrollment flows to cyber charter schools and expenditure and demographic indicators across all 500 residential public school districts in Pennsylvania, finds a three-part geospatial-social process. Initial high-tech cachet surrounding the option stimulated statewide spread in enrollments, but over time growth in student flows became more pronounced among disadvantaged, lower tax-base public school districts. As mass media coverage shifted to a research-substantiated narrative of the model’s academic ineffectiveness, cyber charter enrollments declined first in districts with higher parent educational attainment and then intensified. With the large movement of students, the mean amount of public funds transferred from residential districts in 2014 was about $800,000 (standard deviation about $3,100,000). With dubious academic benefits, districts with the lowest tax base lost significant revenue to cyber charter providers.
LA- English
IS- 0195-6744
AN- EJ1203211
TY- EJ
LV- Not available from ERIC
EM- 2019
RV- Y

Finally, the alert for K-12 online learning.

1. TI- K-12 Online Learning Journal Articles: Trends from Two Decades of Scholarship
AU- Arnesen, Karen T.
AU- Hveem, Joshua
AU- Short, Cecil R.
AU- West, Richard E.
AU- Barbour, Michael K.
SO- Distance Education, v40 n1 p32-53 2019
VI- 40
IP- 1
DT- 20190101
YR- 2019
SP- 32
EP- 53
PG- 22
PT- Academic Journal
PT- Report
SU- Elementary Secondary Education; Online Courses; Electronic Learning; Journal Articles; Scholarship; Educational Trends; Distance Education; Virtual Classrooms; Educational Research; Research Methodology; Authors; Educational Researchers; Periodicals; Bibliometrics; Citation Analysis
SU- Elementary Secondary Education
AB- In this study, we examined the research literature in the field of K-12 online learning to identify the leading scholars, journals, top cited articles, research methods, and topics in this field of inquiry. Our research process involved collecting a corpus of journal articles focused on K-12 online and distance learning; categorizing these articles according to their research methodologies; analyzing trends not only in methodologies employed but also in authorship, citations, journals, and topics addressed. We found the field of K-12 online learning to be growing rapidly in recent years with acceleration not only of new articles but especially of new authors. We also found the field began primarily with emphasizing theoretical articles but is now maturing and emphasizing increasingly more data-based articles. We found K-12 online learning scholarship is scattered among many journals, providing rich opportunities for scholars while also making it more difficult to discern trends across the discipline.
LA- English
IS- 0158-7919
AN- EJ1206898
TY- EJ
LV- Not available from ERIC
EM- 2019
RV- Y

2. TI- Examining the Complexities of Parental Engagement at an Online Charter High School: A Narrative Analysis Approach
AU- Borup, Jered
AU- Walters, Shea
AU- Call-Cummings, Megan
SO- International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, v20 n1 p94-110 Feb 2019
VI- 20
IP- 1
DT- 20190201
YR- 2019
SP- 94
EP- 110
PG- 17
PT- Academic Journal
PT- Report
SU- Parent Participation; Charter Schools; Virtual Classrooms; Online Courses; Educational Technology; Technology Uses in Education; Parent Attitudes; High Schools; Parent Role; Student Needs; Educational Methods
SU- High Schools; Secondary Education
AB- With the rapid growth of K-12 online learning opportunities, calls have come for more and better parental engagement to improve student engagement and reduce student attrition. In this article, we drew from a larger study to share rich narratives from three parents of students who required high levels of parental support for their online learning while enrolled at a charter cyber school. In the first narrative, a mother describes her experiences attempting to work with her son Ivan, who rejected her efforts and disobeyed rules while enrolled in the cyber school. The move from a brick-and-mortar school to the cyber school further strained their relationship and the mother was unprepared to manage Ivan’s learning. The second narrative focuses on how a mother attempted to support Matthew, who lacked self-regulation abilities. The mother who previously homeschooled Matthew, turned to the cyber school because she wanted “less on [her] shoulders” but underestimated the amount of support Matthew required and became frustrated at her lack of control over the pace and content of courses. The final narrative focuses on a mother who had two students enrolled in the cyber school. Each student exhibited different needs that required her to adapt the support strategies she used with Hannah, who procrastinated, and Karl, who lacked confidence. These narratives highlight some of the complexities parents navigate when engaging with their children’s online learning.
LA- English
IS- 1492-3831
FT- Y
AN- EJ1207452
TY- EJ
LV- Available online
EM- 2019
RV- Y

3. TI- Developing and Implementing Instrumentation for Digital High School Curricula: A Regional Study of a Rubric for Instructional Quality
AU- Reinhart, Rachel Vannatta
AU- Banister, Savilla
SO- Athens Journal of Education, v5 n4 p361-373 Nov 2018
VI- 5
IP- 4
DT- 20181101
YR- 2018
SP- 361
EP- 373
PG- 13
PT- Academic Journal
PT- Report
SU- Educational Quality; Online Courses; Instructional Materials; High School Students; Scoring Rubrics; Consortia; School Districts; Units of Study; Teacher Collaboration; Teamwork; Instructional Material Evaluation; Learner Engagement; Educational Objectives; Feedback (Response); Teacher Student Relationship; Teaching Methods; Barriers
SU- High Schools; Secondary Education
AB- As our world has continued to become more dependent on digital communication and collaboration, online learning environments have become more sophisticated. Demand for online and/or hybrid learning materials has increased, not only in higher education arenas, but in elementary and secondary schools, as well. This study describes the development and implementation of an evaluative rubric for high school digital curricula created for a United States regional consortium of school districts, charged with expanding quality digital learning environments for their students. Digital instructional units for ten high school courses were created by collaborative teacher design teams, with each team consisting of 4-7 teachers. With the goal of creating 1/3 of a year’s curriculum, teams developed 2-4 units per course in the first year. A total of 30 units were developed and evaluated. In collaboration with project partners, developed the NWOi3 Evaluation Rubric for Digital Curriculum that was used to assess curriculum units and consisted of 36 criteria organized by eight areas: 1) Overview, 2) Learning Targets, 3) Instructor Support, 4) Accessibility, 5) Instructional Materials, 6) Learner Interaction and Engagement, 7) Technology, and 8) Assessment. A variety of sources contributed to rubric development: Quality Matters K-12 Secondary Rubric (Quality Matters, 2017), Blended Course Peer Review Form (Blended Learning Toolkit, 2014), and the National Standards for Quality Online Programs (International Association for K-12 Online Learning [iNACOL], 2011). The evaluation process utilized a team of reviewers: five content experts, and three curriculum/ technology experts. A third evaluator then summarized the two reviews for every unit, providing a score for each criterion along with detailed comments and feedback. The process of how rubric results were analyzed and reported is described along with the challenges encountered.
LA- English
IS- 2407-9898
FT- Y
AN- EJ1208315
TY- EJ
LV- Available online
EM- 2019
RV- Y

4. TI- Designing for Young Learners.
AU- Borup, Jered1,2
AU- Archambault, Leanna3,4,5
JN- Library Technology Reports
PD- May/Jun2019, Vol. 55 Issue 4, p17-21
PG- 5p
DT- 20190501
PT- Article
AB- The article offers information on the K–12 online learning and K–12 online teacher educator preparation. Topics discussed include importance of personalized learning when online settings are designed and delivered to younger learners; online learning management system that contain content pages, assessment tools, gradebook, and teacher announcements; and some online platforms for K–12 teachers such as Google Classroom, Google Sites, and Edmodo.
DE- ONLINE education
DE- LEARNING Management System
DE- TEACHERS
CO- EDMODO (Company)
PS- GOOGLE (Web resource)
IC- 611710 Educational Support Services
AD- 1Professor-in-charge of George Mason University’s Blended and Online Learning in Schools master’s.
AD- 2PhD at Brigham Young University.
AD- 3Associate professor of learning design and technology within the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College at Arizona State University.
AD- 4Program coordinator for the educational technology master’s program at
ASU.
AD- 5Middle school English language arts in the Clark County School District in Las Vegas, Nevada..
IS- 00242586
AN- 136546074

So lots to report this week.

May 26, 2019

EBSCO Alerts

ebscoFirst, I received the alert for virtual school, but there were no relevant items.

Next, I also received the alert for cyber school, but there were no relevant items.

Finally, I did not receive the alert for K-12 online learning.

So nothing to report this week.

May 19, 2019

EBSCO Alerts

ebscoFirst, I received the alert for virtual school, but there were no relevant items.

Next, the alert for cyber school.

1. TI- Mapping ICT-Industry Influence in U.S. K-12 Public Education: a social network analysis.
JN- Conference Papers — International Communication Association
PD- 2017, preceding p1-27
PG- 28p
DT- 20170101
PT- Article
AB- For the past two decades there has been a proliferation of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) education initiatives and models with a wide range of aims including to equip students with essential “twenty-first century skills” and narrow the achievement gap for under-served communities. These initiatives and models are at the centre of a contemporary reform movement that is characterised by market-based initiatives where federal and regional Departments of Education are increasingly looking to and depending on industry leaders for solutions and resources to ameliorate what is perceived as a failing public education system. Despite rhetoric to the contrary, there is still little evidence that these initiatives are achieving such aims. As such, educators and researchers continue to wonder why there continues to be sustained investments in these initiatives without evidence to suggest they are actually working. To begin answering this question, this paper conducts a Social Network Analysis (SNA) of a rapidly expanding IBM-led public private partnership high school model called Pathways in Technology Early College High School (P-TECH). The P-TECH model, intending to serve marginalised youth, has been touted by President Obama as the future of American secondary education (Shapiro, 2013). This model was chosen as an emblematic example of the foundational transformation the U.S. K-12 education system is seeing. Along with the market-driven education policies it is a transformation where governance and control continues to shift from the public to private sector. Utilising a Political Economy of Communication (PEC) framework, the analysis illuminates the ways in which forces of digital capitalism are propelling these models and the sustained investments without
evidence to suggest their aims are being realised. The findings show how key interpersonal ties play a large role in shaping the shifting landscape of U.S. K-12 public education. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
AB- Copyright of Conference Papers — International Communication Association is the property of International Communication Association and its content may not be copied or emailed to multiple sites or posted to a listserv without the copyright holder’s express written permission. However, users may print, download, or email articles for individual use. This abstract may be abridged. No warranty is given about the accuracy of the copy. Users should refer to the original published version of the material for the full abstract. (Copyright applies to all Abstracts.)
DE- Information & communication technologies
SU- Public education
SU- Social network analysis
SU- Achievement gap
SU- Capitalism
KW- digital capitalism
KW- education
KW- ICTs
KW- political economy
KW- social network analysis
AN- 135750084

Finally, I did not receive the alert for K-12 online learning.

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