Online Learning In Washington State School Districts


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Online Learning In Washington State School Districts

  1. 1. Online Learning in Washington State School Districts August 18, 2009
  2. 2. The Problem <ul><li>Washington State has little centralized data and it is limited in scope. </li></ul><ul><li>Most meaningful policy and practices regarding online learning have been set at the district level, with no consistent reporting mechanism. </li></ul>
  3. 3. The Question <ul><li>What are Washington State school district policies and practices related to online learning? </li></ul>
  4. 4. The Definition <ul><li>Online courses are defined as fully online, delivered entirely via the Internet, with no face-to-face component. </li></ul>
  5. 5. The Report <ul><li>Based on an online survey of 20 questions sent to each district in the state </li></ul><ul><li>45% completion rate </li></ul>
  6. 6. The Issues <ul><li>District policies regarding student access to online courses, such as restrictions and policies to handle student requests to take one or more online course for credit </li></ul><ul><li>Perception of barriers to online courses and how students receive information about online courses </li></ul><ul><li>Types of course providers from which students take online courses for credit and which types of courses are likely to be approved for credit </li></ul><ul><li>Funding and tracking of online courses taken for credit </li></ul><ul><li>Practices to ensure online course quality </li></ul>
  7. 7. National Trends Districts reporting students enrolled in online learning
  8. 8. National Trends Number of students enrolled in online learning
  9. 9. National Trends <ul><li>In 2007-08, 665,871 students were enrolled in fully online courses </li></ul><ul><li>In 2005-06, 73% of online students were in grades 9-12. This percentage dropped to 64% by 2007-08. </li></ul>
  10. 10. National Trends <ul><li>Major barriers/issues in national surveys: </li></ul><ul><li>Concerns about course quality </li></ul><ul><li>Course development and/or purchasing costs </li></ul><ul><li>Concerns about FTE funding issues with online students </li></ul><ul><li>Need for teacher training </li></ul>
  11. 11. State Trends <ul><li>Student enrollment in 2007-08: </li></ul><ul><li>14,266 students taking at least one course </li></ul><ul><li>6,766 took just one </li></ul><ul><li>3,630 took two or more (but not full time) </li></ul><ul><li>3,827 took all courses online </li></ul>
  12. 12. State Trends <ul><li>In 2007-08: </li></ul><ul><li>301 schools had one or more secondary students enrolled in online courses </li></ul><ul><li>26 schools had 100 or more students enrolled in at least one online course </li></ul>
  13. 13. State Trends <ul><li>Three largest online schools in 2007-08: </li></ul><ul><li>WAVA in Steilacoom – 2,513 students </li></ul><ul><li>Insight School of Washington in Quillayute Valley – 991 students </li></ul><ul><li>Internet Academy in Federal Way – 609 students </li></ul>
  14. 14. Online Schools in Washington Advanced Academics Kent Full-time and part-time 8-12 Kent School District Kent Virtual High School / Kaplan Virtual Education Statewide Full-time 7-12 Stevenson-Carson School District Kaplan Academy of Washington KC Distance Learning Statewide Full-time 7-12 Evergreen School District (Vancouver) iQ Academy Washington Insight Schools Statewide Full-time 9-12 Quillayute Valley School District Insight School of Washington Developed in-house Statewide Full-time and part-time K-12 Federal Way School District Federal Way Internet Academy / Digital Learning Commons, Apex Learning, Global Student Network, Calvert 10 member districts Full-time and part-time K-12 Valley School District Columbia Virtual Academy. Achieve Online Worldwide Full-time and part-time K-12 Private (located in Yakima) Christa McAuliffe Academy Course Provider(s) Area Model Grades District School
  15. 15. Online Schools in Washington K12 Inc. Statewide Full-time K-8 Steilacoom Historical School District Washington Virtual Academy Advanced Academics Centralia and Chehalis Full-time and part-time 7-12 Centralia School District and Chehalis School District Twin Cities Virtual Academy / Developed in-house Spokane Part-time 9-12 Spokane School District Spokane Virtual Learning / In-house development, Apex Learning, Everett Full-time and part-time 9-12 Everett Public Schools OnlineHS OdysseyWare Statewide Full-time 6-12 Onalaska School District Onalaska Virtual School / Advanced Academics Statewide Full-time and part-time 9-12 Okanogan School District Okanogan Regional Learning Academy / Advanced Academics Statewide Full-time and part-time 7-12 Marysville School District MOVE UP / Course Provider(s) Area Model Grades District School
  16. 16. Survey Findings – March 2009 <ul><li>Purpose: Determine school district policies and practices related to online courses </li></ul><ul><li>Part 1 – Respondent characteristics </li></ul><ul><li>Part 2 – Survey findings – Policies and Practices </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Students taking courses for credit </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Online course providers, at-risk students, funding </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Tracking and quality assurance </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Access issues </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>General comments </li></ul></ul>
  17. 17. Respondent Characteristics <ul><li>133 schools districts = 45% response </li></ul><ul><li>WA State School for the Blind </li></ul><ul><li>WA State School for the Deaf </li></ul><ul><li>Total enrollment = 495,509 = 48.4% </li></ul><ul><li>3 anonymous districts </li></ul><ul><li>Representative sample, based on </li></ul><ul><ul><li>District enrollment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Online course enrollment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Urban and rural </li></ul></ul>
  18. 18. Policies – Students Taking Online Courses for Credit
  19. 19. District Size Variation <ul><li>Small (< 1,000) </li></ul><ul><li>Medium (1,000 – 9,999) </li></ul><ul><li>Large (> 10,000) </li></ul><ul><li>None permitted </li></ul><ul><ul><li>All small districts (15) making up 25% of small districts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>11 of 15 are rural </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>11 of 15 don’t have a high school </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>No medium/large districts gave this response </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Most common response – only HS students permitted </li></ul><ul><li>64% have no restriction on number of courses taken at a time </li></ul><ul><li>Those with restrictions: 1, 2, 3, 6 courses most common </li></ul>
  20. 20. Who decides whether/how much credit is granted?
  21. 21. Determining Whether Course Can Be Taken for Credit <ul><li>29% consider all 5 factors </li></ul><ul><li>17% consider 4 of 5 factors </li></ul><ul><li>51% consider >3 factors </li></ul>
  22. 22. Online Courses Likely Approved <ul><li>98% selected at least 2 course types </li></ul>
  23. 23. Other Credit Granting Policies and Procedures <ul><li>34 districts </li></ul><ul><ul><li>17 urban/17 rural </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>7 large/16 medium/11 small) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Must be from accredited institutions </li></ul><ul><li>Follow ALE policies and procedures </li></ul><ul><li>Considers FTE status of student </li></ul><ul><li>Who is involved / How approval process happens </li></ul><ul><li>Student eligibility </li></ul>
  24. 24. Online Course Providers <ul><li>Note: 17 wrote in DLC, though it was meant to be in “Nonprofit or Commercial Provider” category </li></ul>From which course providers do students take online courses for credit?
  25. 25. Districts Providing Own Courses <ul><li>37 districts (27%) </li></ul><ul><li>8 provide internal courses exclusively </li></ul><ul><li>Rest have at least one other provider </li></ul><ul><li>76% - medium/large </li></ul><ul><li>46% urban </li></ul>
  26. 26. Online Courses Helping At-Risk <ul><li>74% of districts use as a tool </li></ul><ul><li>Themes: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Credit recovery/retrieval </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Alternative high schools/ALE programs </li></ul></ul>
  27. 27. Funding for Online <ul><li>Who pays? </li></ul>Other responses: It depends, Grant, State, District 66 25 Courses beyond 1.0 FTE 54 71 Credit recovery 51 61 Electives 45 76 Required for graduation 38 58 College credit 47 61 Advanced Placement Student School Circumstance
  28. 28. Tracking Summary
  29. 29. Quality Assurance <ul><li>Question: What actions, if any, do you take to ensure that online courses are aligned with WA GLEs and or CBAs? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>71% take some action </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>9% take no action </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Remainder – don’t know, NA </li></ul></ul>
  30. 30. What Actions? <ul><li>Review course curriculum, description, syllabus </li></ul><ul><li>Assured alignment by DLC </li></ul><ul><li>Same as with traditional courses </li></ul><ul><li>Assuring accreditation </li></ul><ul><li>Researching programs and providers </li></ul><ul><li>Making sure instructor is Highly Qualified Teacher (HQT) </li></ul>
  31. 31. Who is Responsible? <ul><li>Course provider </li></ul><ul><li>Teacher </li></ul><ul><li>Curriculum department </li></ul><ul><li>Counselor and principal </li></ul><ul><li>High school curriculum team </li></ul><ul><li>High school department </li></ul><ul><li>Curriculum advisory committee </li></ul>
  32. 32. Assuring Quality: Teacher PD <ul><li>Question: What kind of PD, if any, do you require for a teacher to be qualified to be an online instructor? </li></ul><ul><li>41% provided info on PD </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Online course provider </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>DLC </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Online learning conferences </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>In-house supervisor </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Orientation for teacher mentor </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Online program coordinator </li></ul></ul>
  33. 33. Access Barriers <ul><li>64% cited more than one barrier </li></ul><ul><li>Others: student characteristics, misalignment of need and fit, district policies </li></ul>
  34. 34. Info Provided to Students about Online Courses
  35. 35. General Comments <ul><li>Students who have been schooled with online classes and then enroll at our school are usually behind our students. </li></ul><ul><li>My main concern is that someday most students will take their high school courses online and teachers will no longer be needed. </li></ul><ul><li>Completion rates drop off without a face-to-face component built in. I wonder how effective the funds used to support online classes are in terms of completion rates for courses without that support system built in. </li></ul><ul><li>I would love to see the state provide funding opportunities for online courses </li></ul>
  36. 36. General Comments <ul><li>Not for everyone. Only certain kinds of students are successful in this type of learning. </li></ul><ul><li>Online course participation should be a graduation requirement for all students in preparation for the work world or higher education. </li></ul><ul><li>Some regulation of all these online course providers and the basic education funding attached to various models seems like a good idea for the near future! </li></ul>
  37. 37. Variations in Policies <ul><li>64% of districts do not restrict the number of online courses a student can take at a time. </li></ul><ul><li>Districts reported using 50 different kinds of online course providers. </li></ul><ul><li>Districts listed 54 unique factors that are considered in determining if an online course can be granted credit. </li></ul>