Virtual School Meanderings

July 5, 2015

Worth A Read

A regular Sunday feature…

Worth A Read

Can The 2016 Election Be About Making It Work For American Families?Posted: 01 Jul 2015 09:00 PM PDT

Elaine Weiss, Broader/Bolder Approach to Education, discusses the importance of the 2016 election: “This election must be about changing that reality and giving our children and their families a real future.”

Teach For America Counter Narratives: Alumni Speak Up and Speak OutPosted: 28 Jun 2015 09:00 PM PDT

T. Jameson Brewer and Kathleen de Marrais have a new book out that shares the stories of Teach For America alumni: “This book – the first of its kind – provides alumni of TFA with the opportunity to share their insight on the organization. And perhaps more importantly, this collection of counter-narratives serves as a testament that many of the claims made by TFA are, in fact, myths that ultimately hurt teachers and students. No longer will alumni voices be silenced in the name of corporate and neoliberal education reform.”

After Pushback, White House Yields on College RatingsPosted: 28 Jun 2015 09:00 PM PDT

Emily Richmond, Education Writers Association, speaks with Paul Fain, Inside Higher Ed, on the Obama Administration’s scaling back of college ratings: “After nearly two years of public debate, and vociferous pushback from the higher education community, the White House announced it is pulling back on plans to rate the nation’s colleges based on a complex matrix of performance measures and student outcomes.”

It All Turns on AffectionPosted: 26 Jun 2015 09:00 PM PDT

Bill Boyle discusses the incongruity of imposing technocratic solutions in contexts, such as education, which require the “nexus of human relationship.”

Will Value-Added Reinforce The Walls Of The Egg-Crate School?Posted: 24 Jun 2015 09:00 PM PDT

Susan Moore Johnson, Harvard University, discusses policy implications for value-added methods (VAMS): “In this column, I bring an organizational perspective to the prospect of using VAMS to improve teacher quality. I suggest why, in addition to VAMS’ methodological limitations, reformers should be very cautious about relying on VAMS to make decisions that have important consequences for both teachers and their students.”

EBSCO Alerts

ebscoBeginning with the EBSCO alert for virtual school.

JN- T H E Journal
PD- Jun2014, Vol. 41 Issue 6, p7-7
PG- 1p
DT- 20140601
PT- Article
AB- The author discusses his innovative use of technology as V-Learning specialist at Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools (MNPS) in Tennessee. He cites the establishment of MNPS’ virtual learning program, an online school option housed in Nashville Middle College High School. He talks about maintaining the high standards for enrollees, keeping students up to speed with its Performance Concerns support system, and a discussion-based assessment at the end of a module.
SU- EDUCATIONAL technology
SU- METROPOLITAN Nashville Public School (Nashville, Tenn.)
FT- 522
IS- 0192592X
AN- 103335907

2. TI- Online learning proves VITAL to success.
AU- DeNisco, Alison
JN- District Administration
PD- Mar2015, Vol. 51 Issue 3, p45-45
PG- 1p
DT- 20150301
PT- Article
AB- The article focuses on the Virtual Instruction to Accentruate Learning (VITAL) online learning program of Putnam County School System in Tennessee launched in the pre-K to 12 in 2008 that helped keep more students in school. Topics covered include teacher professional development and students following self-directed curriculum. Also mentioned are online classes using the Florida Virtual School structure, lower prices for full-credit classes and bring-your-own-device (BOYD) policy.
DE- DISTANCE education
DE- SCHOOL districts
DE- CAREER development
DE- CURRICULA (Courses of study)
DE- BRING your own device policies
IC- 624310 Vocational Rehabilitation Services
IC- 611430 Professional and Management Development Training
IC- 611110 Elementary and Secondary Schools
IS- 15375749
AN- 103336973

3. TI- Interactive Distance Learning in PreK-12 Settings : A Handbook of Possibilities
LA- English
AU- Yates, Jan M.
PB- Westport, CT : Libraries Unlimited
DT- 20030101
PY- 2003
PT- eBook
PT- Book
SU- Distance education–United States
SU- Internet in education–United States
SU- World Wide Web
SU- Study skills–United States
SU- Computer-assisted instruction
SU- Videoconferencing
SU- Television in education
SU- EDUCATION / Non-Formal Education
IB- 9781563088209
IB- 9780313023217
AN- 104130

Next, the EBSCO alert for cyber school.

1. TI- Creating Cyber Libraries : An Instructional Guide for School Library Media Specialists
LA- English
AU- Craver, Kathleen W.
PB- Greenwood Village, Colo : Libraries Unlimited
DT- 20020101
PY- 2002
SE- Libraries Unlimited Professional Guides in School Librarianship Series
PT- eBook
PT- Book
SU- Internet in school libraries
SU- Digital libraries
SU- Libraries–Special collections–Computer network resources
SU- LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES / Library & Information Science / School
IB- 9780313320804
IB- 9780313009280
AN- 80776

2. TI- The Same Thing Over and Over : How School Reformers Get Stuck in Yesterday’s Ideas
LA- English
AU- Hess, Frederick M.
PB- Cambridge, Mass : Harvard University Press
DT- 20100101
PY- 2010
PT- eBook
PT- Book
SU- Education–Aims and objectives–United States
SU- Public schools–United States
SU- Educational change–United States
SU- School improvement programs–United States
SU- Education–United States–Evaluation
SU- EDUCATION / Educational Policy & Reform / General
IB- 9780674055827
IB- 9780674058859
AN- 668839

Finally, the EBSCO alerts for K-12 online learning.

1. TI- Connecting Libraries with Classrooms : The Curricular Roles of the Media Specialist
LA- English
AU- Bishop, Kay
PB- Santa Barbara, Calif : Linworth
DT- 20110101
PY- 2011
PT- eBook
PT- Book
SU- School librarian participation in curriculum plann
SU- Media programs (Education)
SU- EDUCATION / Curricula
IB- 9781598845990
IB- 9781598846003
AN- 358358

2. TI- Online learning softens impact of snow days.
AU- DeNisco, Alison
JN- District Administration
PD- Mar2014, p31-31
PG- 1p
DT- 20140301
PT- Article
AB- The article focuses on the use of online learning by schools to keep students learning during winter weather closures. It mentions that Illinois-based Chicago Public Schools’ teachers post online coursework for students to complete on snow days. It include comments from says Allison Powell of the International Association for K12 Online Learning (iNACOL), that school districts are restructuring and moving to online learning. It adds the law in Ohio for the same.
DE- DISTANCE education
DE- SCHOOL children — United States
DE- SCHOOL districts
PE- POWELL, Allison
IS- 15375749
AN- 103369697

So something for each item this week…

July 4, 2015

Early Childhood Professional Learning, School District Turnaround, and Developmental Education Reform

Yet another item from Wednesday’s inbox…

July | Email to a Friend | View in browser | View Past Issues   WestEd on FacebookWestEd on TwitterWestEd on Google+WestEd LinkedIn
Welcome to the WestEd E-Bulletin, presenting this month’s picks of the latest research-based projects and services, innovative new resources, and upcoming professional development events—all designed to help learners succeed in school and career.
R&D Alert Online

Replicating District Turnaround: What Works Is Customization

Read the latest R&D Alert Online article about lessons learned from WestEd’s extensive experience applying turnaround principles and customizing them for effective implementation in school districts.

Also check out the latest print edition of R&D Alert. Articles highlight engaging students to address school problems, using data to transform teaching, helping early educators address challenging behavior, and closing the achievement gap in science.

QTEL English LearnerQuality Teaching for English Learners (QTEL): Customized Professional Development

English learners are charged with learning a new language while also participating in grade-level academic work. QTEL gives schools and districts the tools to design rigorous, customized quality instruction aligned with new standards, and engages and accelerates English learners’ academic literacy and content knowledge.

Learn about the QTEL approach.


Professional Learning for Early Childhood Professionals: Free Archived Webinars & Resources

View these webinars, and read related resources, to learn how to support children’s cognitive, social, and emotional development, and gain strategies for tackling common challenges facing early childhood leaders:

The webinars are sponsored by the Early Education Effectiveness Exchange (E4), a project of First 5 California.


Reforming Developmental Education to Better Support Students’ Postsecondary Success in the Common Core Era

Research shows college completion rates are particularly low among students who are required to take developmental (i.e., remedial) courses. Download this briefexamining two states’ recent efforts to redesign their developmental education programs to support student success.


Supporting the Success of Students at Risk of Dropping Out of High School: Policy Forum Proceedings

Academic and personal circumstances can make it difficult for some students to attend school regularly and earn a diploma. A recent policy forum explored education policy and practice options, focusing on alternative accountability measures, to improve outcomes for at-risk students and the alternative schools that serve them.

Read the key takeaways from the forum, plus recommendations for schools, districts, and policymakers.

Genes & Traits

Making Sense of SCIENCE—Genes & Traits for Teachers of Grades 5-12: 30% Discount!

Making Sense of SCIENCE courses provide all the ingredients for building a scientific way of thinking in both teachers and students.

This new resource—a professional development course—supports the learning of key concepts related to genetics, from the origins of traits to the many factors that influence gene expression.

Learn more about this Making Sense of SCIENCE course.


Center on Standards & Assessment Implementation: Research Support and Technical Assistance for States

The Center on Standards & Assessment Implementation (CSAI), a collaboration between WestEd and CRESST, aims to provide state education agencies with the support and research findings they need to make informed decisions about standards, assessment, and accountability policies.

Visit the Center on Standards & Assessment Implementation website to learn more and to access interactive tools and the CSAI resource library.

July 2015 | Email to a Friend | Subscribe WestEd FacebookWestEd TwitterWestEd Google +WestEd LinkedIn

Copyright © 2015 WestEd. All rights reserved.
Our mailing address is:


730 Harrison Street

San Francisco, CA 94107

Add us to your address book

The 1 Online Learning Conference Not To Miss

Also from Wednesday’s inbox…

Educators & trainers:
“The one conference I never miss. Madison in August is unbelievable.”
—John Orlando, Northcentral University
Conference finale: Got challenges?
Engage with the experts to address some of the biggest challenges in distance education and online learning today.
Marc Prensky Cathy Sandeen Nick Floro Tanya Joosten Michael Moore
Thursday, August 13, 2:45pm
Come early, stay late
At the conference you’ll get new strategies and new energy for teaching online. It’s a lot to cram in to just a few days. Why not come early for preconference workshops — and stick around to explore the sights and sounds of Madison.Preconference workshops — $95 each
Topics include:
  • Designing learning for results
  • Enhancing online learner engagement
  • Evaluating online teaching
  • Creating interactive lectures
  • Promoting presence and interaction online
  • Data visualization
  • Building community
  • Creating an online course
  • Developing excellent online instructors

Best training for your budget

The sun is shining, and the lakes are shimmering. Madison is ready for you! Early bird registration is just $495—hundreds of dollars less than comparable events. Choose from 140 sessions to build exactly the skills you’re looking for.

Early-bird deadline July 21! Save $50!
Fundamentals of Online Teaching Conference Certificate
Designed for those new to online learning, this blended certificate entails pre- and post-conference work plus onsite conference activities. Receive both the conference registration AND certificate for only $850 ($1,200 value).
Must register by July 9 to participate. Learn more >
Questions? Contact Kimary Peterson • kjpeterson@dcs.wisc.edu608‑265‑4159
View in browser



This message was sent to from:UW-Madison Distance Ed Professional Development | | UW-Madison Continuing Studies | 21 N Park St | Madison, WI 53715

Virtual Schooling in the News

InTheNewsBeginning with the ASCD SmartBrief.

Report: Blended learning, STEAM drive ed-tech adoption
Blended learning and STEAM — or science, technology, engineering, arts and math — are expected to accelerate the use of education technology in classrooms worldwide, according to a New Media Consortium Horizon Report released Monday. The report features education trends identified by 56 experts from 22 countries. The Hechinger Report (6/29)

Back to the regular Google News alert for virtual school.

Another attempt to fix school transfers is vetoed

It would have allowed students in St. Louis County and certain other areas of Missouri to attend private virtual schools at the expense of their districts, …

Winter Park woman awaits first pro MMA fight

Felicia Spencer teaches algebra at Florida Virtual School and has signed to fight professionally in MMA. (Ricardo Ramirez Buxeda, Orlando Sentinel).

Williamson may hold summit on student growth

Looney said he has tasked staff members to research how a virtual school would work for Williamson County. However, he said he was not optimistic …

Suwannee Schools: breakfast in classroom expanded, virtual school employee at local office

Breakfast in school classrooms and a blended-style virtual school program were two items discussed at a workshop and later passed at the Suwannee …

Maine’s First Virtual High School Graduates Only Met At Ceremony

Maine’s first virtual school recently held a small ceremony for their first graduates. The five students who have completed their high school education …

Gov. Jay Nixon vetoes Missouri student transfer bill, blocking charter and virtual school expansion

Nixon rejected House Bill 42, which went far beyond the transfer law and proposed expanding opportunities for public charter schools and virtual …

Califone Launches Virtual School Starter Kit at ISTE 2015 – PRWeb

The Mobile Peripheral Pack offers tools that support virtual school students and those who work in flexible learning environments. San Fernando, Calif …

Califone Launches Virtual School Starter Kit at ISTE 2015

To flourish in virtual or classroom learning environments, students need technology that is as mobile as they are. Califone International, LLC, a leading …

Williamson may hold summit on student growth

Virtual schools enable students to attain their entire education online or take select courses online. There are nine public virtual schools in the state, …

Charter school to serve high-schoolers

Earlier in her career, Bogen was the principal of Sheridan AllPrep Academy, a virtuallearning program in the Sheridan School District. Even at that …

More steps toward online school

And Virtual Virginia, the commonwealth’s online high school program, is poised to recruit as many as 100 students to pilot the state’s first full-time …

County boards propose fall schools summit on growth

Williamson County county commissioners and school board members at a Saturdaymorning retreat delved into virtual schools and building bigger …

Winter Park woman awaits first pro MMA fight

Felicia Spencer teaches algebra at Florida Virtual School and has signed to fight professionally in MMA. (Ricardo Ramirez Buxeda, Orlando Sentinel).

Suwannee Schools: breakfast in classroom expanded, virtual school employee at local office

Breakfast in school classrooms and a blended-style virtual school program were two items discussed at a workshop and later passed at the Suwannee …

Pelham City Schools adopts Virtual School Program

PELHAM— Pelham High School students will have the option to take virtual classes in the upcoming school year after Pelham City Schools voted to …

Local Students Look to Online Classes to Support their Learning

They heard about Apex Learning Virtual School, an online school that provides the opportunity for students to take an additional course online to …

Virtual public school to hold information session in Provo

With increased education options, the purpose of this information session is to answer parents’ questions as to how a virtual school operates and …

TN Virtual Academy to enroll returning students only

State test scores will determine the future of the school — a statute authorizes the state’s education commissioner to close a virtual school that earns a …

School is becoming virtually awesome in Richmond

Richmond Virtual School students Hannah Goertz, Edmond Wu, Kaelan Baker and Tal Mader sit outside Palmer secondary while attempting to …

New state laws passed for missing child alerts, online high school classes

The law goes into effect Wednesday, but high schools have until the 2016-2017 school year to establish a policy to offer some level of virtual school for …

City council allies with school board

Proposed legislation would allow home-schooled students and virtual school students to participate in any extracurricular or athletic team the district …

GA Teacher Honored at 2015 PBS LearningMedia Digital Innovator Summit in Philadelphia

… from Oconee Middle School and Georgia Virtual School, were named Local Digital Innovators and will represent Georgia over the next year.

Rep. Jason Chipman: Education Reform in Missouri Schools

The bill also would have given students new educational opportunities by allowing for more charter schools and providing a virtual school option.

Finally, the Google News alert for cyber school.

Letter: Taxpayers pay, school districts forward funds

Maybe they believe, think or know that their child is getting a better education at the charter/cyber school. When will people learn that increasing taxes …

PA Cyber Charter School graduates 1200

PITTSBURGH, June 22, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — The Pennsylvania Cyber Charter Schoolgraduated 1,200 members of the Class of 2015, …

Jeannette school taxes will rise by 1.53 mills

A $600,000 increase in expenditures in the 2015-16 budget is largely the result of higher pension contributions and cyberschool costs, officials said.

Marion Center board pares down spending plan

And an open house introduction day may be held in August to help make students and their parents more comfortable with the cyber school’s …

Quaker Valley board renews church’s lease of Osborne school

Board members said it was unfair to ask local taxpayers to pay for cyber school tuition under the current structure because the tuition the district must …

Farewell, Keith

The district also reconfigured the middle school to allow for all-day kindergarten, and developed Cyber School and the Early Middle College program.


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