1 Online Learning Programs What Do You Need to Know? Presented by: Heather Masshardt PSBA Policy Consultant AASPS Conference 2013
2 What is Online Learning? Online Learning is a term often applied broadly to learning that occurs via a computer or other technology with connectivity (such as access to the Internet and World Wide Web) (PA Dept. of Education 2013)
3 What is Online Learning? inacol further defines Online Learning as: Education in which instruction and content are delivered primarily over the Internet, a form of distance learning. The term does not include printbased correspondence education, broadcast television or radio, videocassettes, and stand-alone educational software programs that do not have a significant Internet-based instructional component Used interchangeably with Virtual learning, Cyber learning, elearning
4 Fast Facts About Online Learning 27 States have virtual schools. 31 states and Washington, D.C. have statewide full-time, online schools The top reasons most school districts make online learning available are to offer courses not otherwise accessible and provide opportunities for credit recovery (inacol Fast Facts About Online Learning 2013)
5 Fast Facts About Online Learning Online Learning programs may be operated by school districts, charter schools, community colleges or other providers, depending on state guidelines Schools may develop their own content and use their own teachers or contract with another school entity or private company
6 Common Terms and Models inacol the International Association for K-12 Online learning ( is a nonprofit membership organization representing school entities, charter schools, colleges, research institutions, and others; their website contains helpful tools for schools starting online programs
7 Common Terms and Models Full-Time Online Learning (also called Cyberschools or Virtual Schools) includes programs where students are enrolled primarily, and often only, in the online program and participate in all courses virtually, either at home, in a monitored school setting or by other means (library, Internet café, etc.)
8 Common Terms and Models Sample model for Full-Time Program (District cyberschool Learning On and Off Campus) Quakertown Community School District
9 Common Terms and Models Blended Learning - any time a student learns at least in part at a supervised brick-and-mortar location away from home and at least in part through online delivery with some element of student control over time, place, and/or path (inacol definition)
10 Common Terms and Models Blended Learning Examples: Student takes regular high school schedule, but includes an Online Learning course in the school library during study hall to take Mandarin Chinese Student takes 3 regular courses at school and 3 Online Learning courses from home based on an IEP
11 Common Terms and Models Sample model for Blended Learning
12 Common Terms and Models Sample model for Blended Learning (Cyberschool with online and offline teaching)
13 What s Happening In Your State? Does your state have its own virtual school or do school entities provide these programs independently? What type of funding is available for Online Learning? Is Online Learning regulated through state law, policy or Board of Education?
14 Policy/Procedural Implications Policy or Administrative Regulation? Depending on your state s legislation, policy may be required In PA, we have recommended that districtoperated online programs follow the same general policies of the district, with specific administrative regulations or procedures to address program requirements; a general policy may be developed based on programs
15 Policy/Procedural Implications What areas should be considered when drafting policy or administrative regulations related to Online Learning?
16 Student Enrollment and Participation Enrollment participation/procedures: How will enrollment process change? Home School students? Nonresident students? Homebound medical or pregnant students? Suspended/Expelled students? How will student accounting occur?
17 Extracurricular Activities and Athletic Eligibility Eligibility for extracurricular activities and athletics How will academic eligibility be measured? How will daily attendance be measured?
18 Extracurricular Activities and Athletic Eligibility NCAA Review of Online Courses Student athletes in Division I and II schools must have academic credentials certified and earn qualifying core course GPA & test scores Courses must be certified by NCAA Eligibility Center FAQ for nontraditional courses: and navigate through to the Nontraditional Course FAQ under Resources
19 Student Services Administrative regulations or procedures should address how student services will be provided to students in online programs: Health services Library services Student assistance programs Transportation English as a Second Language/Bilingual education
20 Student Services Special Education IDEA Procedures should address how supplemental services and therapies will be provided to online learners Schools must consider how IEP language should be drafted to accommodate the Online Learning environment
21 Student Services Section 504 Students Schools must consider how Online Learning will be provided to students with Section 504 Service Agreements through equally accessible technology: letters/colleague ese.html
22 Student Responsibilities Online Learning students should generally be subject to the same policies as other students and should be notified of such: Discipline Codes of student conduct Student rights and responsibilities Drugs and alcohol Harassment and bullying
23 Student Responsibilities Acceptable Use Policies Ensure students are notified and educated Education on appropriate online behavior/ cyberbullying, digital citizenship Schools must ensure appropriate safety measures are in place for students off-site
24 Technology Broadband availability Schools Student homes Online Learning platforms Technical support Computer access for students
25 Curriculum and Assessments Credit requirements Same credits, different courses? Grading scales, GPA, and class rank Graduation requirements Assessments How and where proctored?
26 Copyright Considerations Monitoring online content Teacher-related content, student-related content, vendor content Enforcing copyright and Fair Use Educating students on plagiarism TEACH Act/Distance Learning copyrightoncampus/basics/teach.html (Copyright Clearance Center) Section=distanceed#infotech (American Library Association)
27 Create or Contract Staffing Issues Staffing implications will vary based on whether the school is using its own teachers to deliver content or contracting with a vendor Consider Collective Bargaining Agreements and negotiated contracts
28 Staffing Issues Compensation provisions Professional development Child/Student abuse training and prevention in an online environment
29 Pennsylvania s Collaboration Pennsylvania Department of Education, PSBA, and Intermediate Unit staff collaborated to develop 3 toolkits for school entities creating Online Learning programs
30 Pennsylvania s Collaboration Technology Toolkit Equipment standards and equitable access Broadband access and bandwidth needs Delivery platforms and Student Information Systems Technical support Equipment repair/replacement
31 Pennsylvania s Collaboration Policy & Procedures Toolkit Student enrollment and participation Extracurricular and athletic eligibility Student services Student policies and student responsibilities Curriculum, coursework, assessments Staffing issues
32 Pennsylvania s Collaboration Program Toolkit Content, Curriculum, Assessments developing, acquiring, maintaining Identifying participants Evaluating readiness and support systems Implementing professional development teaching and technology Implementing student preparation learning and technology
33 Questions What challenges do you see for your school entities? How can your association assist schools?
34 Credits and Resources Keeping Pace with K-12 Online & Blended Learning 2012 Annual Review inacol: Christensen Institute: Pennsylvania Department of Education and PA Intermediate Unit 15
35 Contact Information Heather Masshardt PSBA Policy Consultant Thank You!