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London Region (2013) - State of the Nation: K-12 Online Learning in Canada

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London Region (2013) - State of the Nation: K-12 Online Learning in Canada

  1. 1. State of the Nation Study: K-12 Online Learning in Canada Michael K. Barbour Wayne State University
  2. 2. Methodology
  3. 3. National Trends • K–12 distance education continues to grow • Correspondence education continues to be prevalent • Blended learning is seen as effective ICT • Several jurisdictions have made dramatic changes over the past five years
  4. 4. National Trends: Regulation • Many provinces and territories have some reference to distance education in the Education Act or Schools Act – this is changing! • regulation of K–12 distance education is the use of contracts with MoE or policy handbooks • British Columbia and Nova Scotia are major exceptions
  5. 5. National Trends: Activity
  6. 6. National Trends: Activity
  7. 7. National Trends: Activity • Growth of K-12 distance education is quite uneven – reported growth in some jurisdictions may be due to better accounting • Participation in blended learning is not counted in most instances
  8. 8. National Overview - Activity
  9. 9. Newfoundland and Labrador • Single province-wide online program since 2001 – grew out of district-based initiatives and legacy distance education program • No specific policies for online learning, but provincial program is housed within MOE
  10. 10. Nova Scotia • Recent creation of a single province-wide program – grew out of district-based online initiatives • 11 provisions included in the agreement between the Government & teachers union
  11. 11. Prince Edward Island • Uses online learning program in New Brunswick – legacy video conferencing program has been phased out • MOE has issued two directives since 2001 containing guidelines for the use of distance education in K-12 environment
  12. 12. New Brunswick • Single province-wide program since 1998 – used frequently by face-to-face teachers too • Ministry has created a 100+ page handbook that districts have to agree to in order to participate in online learning • Provincial program is housed within MOE
  13. 13. Quebec • Couple individual online and correspondence programs that partner with school districts – additional a couple of programs that provide for connected classrooms or blended learning • MOE devolved distance education to the districts about a decade ago – currently no regulation
  14. 14. Ontario • Primarily district-based program using the provincial CMS and course content – cooperation between boards through consortiums – three private schools and Independent Learning Centre • Ministry has created contracts that districts have to agree to in order to participate in online learning based on the Provincial E- Learning Strategy
  15. 15. Manitoba • Province offers three forms – MOE manages correspondence and audio teleconference systems – districts manage their own web-based program using MOE content • MOE approves programs and regulates the use of their distance content
  16. 16. Saskatchewan • Primarily district-based programs – most have their own capacity in some form – sixteen districts provided space to external students through the Saskatchewan Distance Learning Course Repository • Province devolved responsibility to districts – no regulation
  17. 17. Alberta • Numerous district-based, several private, and a province-wide program • MOE has no specific online learning policies – release Inspiring Action on Education in June 2011 – currently undergoing external review of distance education regulation and activity
  18. 18. British Columbia • Significant numbers of public district-based & independent (i.e., private) programs – begun expanding nationally and internationally • Most extensive distributed learning regulations – funding follows student – quality audit process
  19. 19. Yukon • Several MOE initiatives (currently expanding video conferencing opportunities) – also utilize program from British Columbia & Alberta • Primarily regulated by Ministry or through inter-provincial agreements
  20. 20. Northwest Territories • Primarily utilizes programs from Alberta – beginning to create internal capacity – also has one district-based program (i.e., Beaufort Delta Education Council) • Primarily regulated by Ministry or through inter-provincial agreements
  21. 21. Nunavut • Utilizes program from Alberta & British Columbia – a belief that southern distance education courses rarely meet the needs of students in context, cultural, relevance, and pedagogy – trying to build internal capacity (e.g., building on other existing programs, including adult programs like “Together @ a Distance”) • Primarily regulated by Ministry or through inter- provincial agreements
  22. 22. Take-Aways • Regulatory behaviour varies considerably from no to extensive regulations • Level of activity is increasing nationally, but to what level we just can’t tell definitively • Unions remain cautiously supportive
  23. 23. http://virtualschool.wikispaces.com/canada/
  24. 24. Your Questions and Comments
  25. 25. Assistant Professor Wayne State University, USA mkbarbour@gmail.com http://www.michaelbarbour.com

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