Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Virtual School Kick Off

The kick off meeting for the Virtual School internship was last night. I had the opportunity to partner with an AP History teacher. She is conveniently located right across the Bay from me. As I listened to the presentation, a number of questions came to mind. I'm going to list them here in the hopes of reflecting on them later in the process.
  • Teacher/student ratio is between 100 and 200. The teachers take great pride in the personal connections they make with the students. There is an administrative process in place that is managed from the virtual school website. It appears to be very organized. I'm interested to see first hand how these contacts are managed.
  • Courses are developed and designed by curriculum specialists. The teachers have limited input on lessons and how they are presented. This is one of my favorite aspects of teaching. I wonder if teachers miss the creative process.
  • FVS is a leader among virtual schools. Curious about other virtual schools, I did some research and found that many states also have similar programs including Georgia, Texas, Minnesota, Louisiana, North Carolina, Wisconsin, Illinois, Kentucky, Mississippi, Oregon and the list goes on. I'm interested in learning a little bit about different virtual school philosophies.
  • I set up a Google Alert for "Virtual Schools" to keep track of current press and blog coverage.
  • I found Dr. Cavanaugh's Development and Management of Virtual Schools. I hope to use it as a resource.


Jan Zeiger said...

I'm looking forward to your posts about this topic. I'm a teacher turned "stay at home mom" who needs to go back to work full-time in August. Teaching at FLVS sounds wonderful, and it would allow me the freedom to work from home.

Good luck with your internship.

Mark said...

I am also curious about teachers having limited input on the development of lessons. And the 8am-8pm availability, including holidays and weekends? That quite baffles me. :) I wonder how much of a challenge it is to provide excellent, detailed feedback for the students.

I was exploring Cavanaugh's book as well. I talked a little about it in one of my posts.