Virtual School Reality

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Virtual School Reality

  1. 1. Virtual Reality Diane Lewis
  2. 2. SCVS Seminole County Virtual School SADL SCVS Vendor
  3. 3. Poll• How many of you have or are considering starting a virtual school option in your district within the next two years? (http://www.polleverywhere.com/multiple_choice_polls/MTYxNjU1NjQzMA)• Text answer to: 22333• For YES, put 409215 in the message• For NO, put 409216 in the message
  4. 4. A Time of Choice Home Private Charter
  5. 5. RealityYou will be competing for students.
  6. 6. Myths No Virtual School!
  7. 7. RealityVirtual school isn’t just coming – it’s here.
  8. 8. Myth: Virtual School Is Not AsGood As Traditional SchoolReality: Virtual school is what YOU make it.• Your virtual school should: – Be operated by your district – Use local teachers – Have local control – Use good quality curriculum – Be a source of pride for your district
  9. 9. Myth: We can’t afford to start avirtual school. Reality: You can’t afford not to.Reality: Virtual school is easily a break-even or even positive financial venture if managed properly.• Initial investments: – Staff – Office space – Eventually other spaces will be needed – Marketing – Start up funding (our funding is realized at the end of the year.)
  10. 10. Myth: Students Don’t NeedVirtual School Reality: Virtual School is an important option for today’s students• Not all students fit the mold of 4 walls and a clock• FL requires 1 virtual course to graduate• Much of the post-K12 education will be virtual
  11. 11. Myth: Students Don’t NeedVirtual School Reality: Virtual School is an important option for today’s students• Many of our students are able to take courses they otherwise would not – AP courses – Core subjects (Class size or choice) – Electives • Chinese, French, Spanish • Middle School electives • Game Design, Digital Photo
  12. 12. Myth: Virtual School is Only for“Certain” StudentsReality: Virtual school is not for all students, but it is for all types of students.• Elementary, Middle and High School• Advanced• Struggling• ESE• Gifted• Athletes/Performers• Average students• Alternative Education
  13. 13. Myth: Virtual School is Only for“Certain” StudentsReality: Virtual school is not for all students, but it is for all types of students.• Success in virtual school is more dependent on the following factors than the student’s label – Support at home – the amount and type of support varies by curriculum/program and age of the student – A good program/curriculum – Active, engaged, caring teachers that are in touch frequently – An administrative staff that is involved and monitoring student success
  14. 14. Myth: You Don’t Know Who IsDoing the Work in Virtual School
  15. 15. Myth: You Don’t Know Who IsDoing the Work in Virtual SchoolReality: My teachers know their virtual school students better than they knew their face to face students.• How: – First month, weekly phone calls – Monthly phone calls – Face-to-Face sessions – Discussion-Based Assessment for every unit
  16. 16. Myth: We Can Wait Reality: The first to stake a claim in your area will develop the strongest foothold. Will it be you?
  17. 17. When You Are Ready to TakeThe Plunge…
  18. 18. Virtual School Does NotHappen By Magic
  19. 19. Myth: Running a Virtual SchoolRequires No Space, Personnel, Effort Reality: …Wait…Really??• Parent calls credit check/graduation• Counseling parents requirements decisions • Managing faculty and• Managing enrollments staff• Data reporting • Professional• Student files development• Student support • Virtual walk-throughs• Counseling students and
  20. 20. Myth: Virtual School is AboutTechnology Reality: People are the heart of virtual school• The two most important staff members starting the school are: – An administrator – A data clerk• Avoid using teachers by a provider – Hire the RIGHT Teachers – Use FULL TIME TEACHERS
  21. 21. Myth: Virtual School is AboutTechnology Reality: People are the heart of virtual school• Research and Forecast – Do your homework and forecast enrollments if there is existing virtual data in your area – You will have to hire before you know your enrollment, so there is an element of financial risk• Beyond that, additional staff will be required as the school grows: – Telephone help – A counselor – More administrative/support help
  22. 22. Myth: Teaching Virtual Schoolis Easy!
  23. 23. Reality!
  24. 24. So What’s Next?• What does Illinois want for their students? – Vendor-driven virtual schooling? • Loss of students • Loss of funding • Loss of control • Quality is not up to you – State-level virtual schooling? • Quality courses built on your standards • Provides opportunities to large and small districts, rural areas, etc • Potential for Districts to franchise or lease courses
  25. 25. So What’s Next?• What does Illinois want for their students? – District-level virtual schooling? • Lease from state, purchase digital curriculum, or build your own • Keep students in your district • Local control • Quality control • Bring students back from home school
  26. 26. Your Final Reality Virtual Changes Existing Realities• Mastery-based learning• Individualized pace• Digitizing curriculum – no text books• The end of grade levels• MUVEs• Customized learning pathways
  27. 27. Change… You never change things by fighting the existing reality.To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.– R. Buckminster Fuller
  28. 28. Contact This presentation is available on SlideShare.net Diane Lewis Director of Instructional Technology and Virtual Schools Seminole County Public Schools 407-320-0157 Diane_Lewis@scps.us

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