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MAD-LaT 2011 - State of the Nation: K-12 Online Learning in Canada
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MAD-LaT 2011 - State of the Nation: K-12 Online Learning in Canada

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Barbour, M. K. (2011, May). State of the nation: K-12 online learning in Canada. An invited presentation at the Manitoba Association for Distributed Learning and Training conference, Winnipeg, MN.

Barbour, M. K. (2011, May). State of the nation: K-12 online learning in Canada. An invited presentation at the Manitoba Association for Distributed Learning and Training conference, Winnipeg, MN.

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  • 1. State of the Nation Study: K-12 Online Learning in Canada Michael K. Barbour, Wayne State University
  • 2. History of K-12 Distance Education in Canada• correspondence education began in British Columbia in 1919• first virtual school appeared in 1993 in British Columbia• distance education used primarily in rural areas and was primarily managed by the provincial governments
  • 3. K-12 Online Learning in Canada Literature• administrative & policy issues surrounding the formation of school district consortia to provide web-based distance education in Alberta (Haughey & Fenwich, 1996)• a research project that began in 1996 using a school district intranet to provide tele- learning opportunities to rural, secondary school students in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador (Stevens, 1997a, 1997b; Stevens & Mulcahy, 1997)
  • 4. K-12 Online Learning in Canada Literature• program evaluations within individual provinces or across provinces – Alberta (Haughey & Murihead, 1999) – Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, & Ontario (Barker et al., 1999) – Newfoundland and Labrador (Brown, Sheppard & Stevens, 2000) – Alberta (Ballas & Belyk, 2000) – Alberta, British Columbia, & Newfoundland and Labrador (Barker & Wendall, 2001)
  • 5. K-12 Online Learning in Canada Literature• Canadian Teachers Federation (2000) described some trends in individual provinces as a part of a brief to examine potential contract issues related to K-12 online learning• first national survey of K-12 online learning in Canada, reported that Alberta continued to have the most students engaged in online learning, with British Columbia also having a significant number of district-based and consortium programmes (O’Haire, Froese-Germain & Lane- De Baie, 2003)
  • 6. K-12 Online Learning in Canada Literature• an unpublished document prepared for HRDC that provided a one page overview of the state of K-12 online learning (with a noticeable focus on Alberta and British Columbia), along with some of the potential barriers to successful growth in this area and recommendations to overcome these barriers (Smith, 2003)• in a survey of how schools were using information and communication technologies, found that almost 30% of schools — and almost 40% of secondary schools — in Canada were using the Internet for online learning (Plante & Beattie, 2004)
  • 7. K-12 Online Learning in Canada Literature• the number of K-12 schools connected to the Internet ranged between 91% in Manitoba to over 99% in Newfoundland and Labrador and New Brunswick• further, Quebec had the most students per Internet- connected computer with 6.5 students/computer and the Yukon had the least number of students per Internet connected computer with 2.9 students/computer• “virtually all schools in Canada had computers and nearly all were connected to the Internet” (Ertl & Plante, 2004)
  • 8. K-12 Online Learning in Canada Literature• a second national survey, mainly provided the reasons why online learning was growing and ten themes based upon the literature about online learning at the K-12 level in Canada, with only a one to two paragraph discussion of the extent of online education in each of the provinces (Haughey, 2005)• the State of e-Learning in Canada report indicated that more rural schools than urban schools reported having students who participated in online courses and that this was often to supplement the curriculum, particularly when courses were either unavailable or could not be offered due to limited resources or teachers (Canadian Council on Learning, 2009)
  • 9. MethodologyProvince/Territory 2008 2009 2010Newfoundland & Labrador KS / DA MoE / DA DANova Scotia DA MoE / DA MoEPrince Edward Island DA KS / DA MoENew Brunswick DA MoE / DA MoEQuebec KS KS / DA MoE / KSOntario KS / DA KS / DA KS / DAManitoba KS MoE / DA MoESaskatchewan KS / DA MoE MoEAlberta DA KS / DA KS / DABritish Columbia MoE / DA MoE / DA MoEYukon DA KS / DA MoE / DANorthwest Territories DA MoE / DA DANunavut DA MoE MoE
  • 10. National Overview Single provincial programme Combination of provincial and district-based programmes Primarily district- based programmes Use programmes from other provinces
  • 11. National Trends• Regulations varied significantly• Method of delivery is still print-based in many instances – Greater reliance upon synchronous tools than elsewhere• Between 150,00 and 175,000 K-12 students took one or more DE courses
  • 12. Atlantic Canada
  • 13. Atlantic Canada• Newfoundland and Labrador – single province-wide program – no regulations• Nova Scotia – single province-wide and district-based programs (also maintains legacy programs) – regulations in Provincial Teachers’ Agreement• Prince Edward Island – uses distance education from New Brunswick – two Ministerial Directives• New Brunswick – single province-wide program – series of Ministry policy documents
  • 14. Central Canada
  • 15. Central Canada• Quebec – district-based programs for drop-put students using provincial level content provider (mainly correspondence-based) – English-language province-wide synchronous program – non-DE focused province-wide program for sharing curricular resources that is used for DE in limited ways – no provincial regulations• Ontario – province-wide CMS and course content, used by district-based programs (district co-operation through consortiums) – several private virtual schools, plus numerous independent schools with online learning programs – series of Ministry policy documents
  • 16. Western Canada
  • 17. Western Canada• Manitoba – three province-wide programs (for online province provides CMS and course content, used by district-based programs) – Ministry policy documents currently being updated• Saskatchewan – previously similar to Manitoba, now all district-based programs (since 2009- 10) – no regulations since devolution from Ministry• Alberta – province-wide and district-based programs – limited Ministry policy documents (policy review abandoned in favour of blended/hybrid learning approach)• British Columbia – district-based and private (independent) programs – Extensive regulatory regime
  • 18. Northern Canada
  • 19. Northern Canada• Yukon – Utilize programs from British Columbia & Alberta – referenced in legislation, largely governed by an inter- provincial agreement with BC school district• North West Territories – utilize a program in Alberta – several Ministry policy documents• Nunavut – past and future plans for pilot programs (may utilize services in Alberta) – no regulations
  • 20. Manitoba
  • 21. Manitoba• Province offers three forms – MOE manages correspondence and audio teleconference systems o 3400 enrolments for correspondence, approximately 530 for teleconference – districts manage their own web-based programmes using MOE content • approximately 4000 students• All or almost districts appear to participate in web-based option to some extent
  • 22. Manitoba• Province offers three forms – MOE manages correspondence and audio teleconference systems o 3400 enrolments for correspondence, approximately 530 for teleconference – districts manage their own web-based programmes using MOE content • approximately 4000 students• All or almost districts appear to participate in web-based option to some extent
  • 23. National Trends• between 150,00 and 175,000 K-12 students took one or more DE courses• first online learning programs began in 1993 in British Columbia – still most extensive user with over 71,000 students enrolled in one or more courses• several provinces provide content and infrastructure, but districts operate programs
  • 24. National Trends• method of delivery is still print-based in many instances – greater reliance upon synchronous tools than elsewhere• seen as a substitute when face-to-face learning is not feasible or economic – largely in rural areas – primarily in specialized subject areas – often for highly selective students
  • 25. National Trends• most extensive distance education regulations found in British Columbia – quality assurance model – funding follows student• unions are supportive (in some instances cautiously) – NSTU has 11 provisions concerning distance education in their agreement – BCTF has conducted most of the research into their programs
  • 26. http://www.inacol.org/research/docs/iNACOL_Canada Study10-finalweb.pdfhttp://www.inacol.org/research/bookstore/index.php
  • 27. YourQuestions andComments
  • 28. Assistant Professor Wayne State University, USA mkbarbour@gmail.comhttp://www.michaelbarbour.com