Sunday, April 26, 2015

Virtual Schooling

The Virtual Schooling group assignment provided an online collaborative experience to create the following presentation on Virtual Schooling.  The group members included: Mallory Buzun-Miller, Will Puvalowski, Blair Sawyers, and myself Judith Considine.  I invite you to watch our final presentation narrated by Blair Sawyers.  

The URL is listed below: 

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Week 14-15 Blog

After reading the scenarios and considering the school districts I work for and for the districts I have worked for in the past I believe that each scenario will be handled a little different at each school district.  The outcomes of each scenario, I believe, will vary depending on the policies districts have in place as well as the administrative leadership. The relationship with the board of education members is very important to district leaders.

School districts who are on the cutting edge of technology will be able to handle these changes and scenarios better. These districts will be able to move forward with changes at a more rapid pace as they will have the agility to make the changes needed. However, that is not to say they will not have challenges to contend with as the changes take place. District Superintendents have challenging jobs. As the school leader the Superintendent needs to be well connected to all stakeholders including: teachers, school board members, unions, parents, business community, and legislators.

One of the changes our school district is facing is the change in population. The shift in population plays a major role or factor in the district’s funding. Some districts might not be facing a lower enrollment, but are seeing new families or even English as a second language students enroll in their school.  However, lower enrollment means less dollars, which in turn means a short fall of funding.  Teachers and programs are cut, and the need to purchase new technology is not top priority.

One answer to help schools provide the services they need to help their students be successful is the option to implement online learning.  I think online learning is still in a slow mode. As more and more teachers expand their knowledge and experience with online learning will will see an increase in the momentum of online learning. Eventually, we will see a rapid change in the learning environment. 

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Virtual Schooling continues

 If given the opportunity I would have appreciated the opportunity to take an online course when I was in high school. Online courses provide a strong foundation for online collaboration and prepare students for the workforce.

In my current situation online learning is utilized daily by employees to learn new software which is being updated and new versions are created. Online learning includes computer based training as well. Online training and leadership development courses are offered for employees. Currently, I am working on creating training simulations utilizing Camtasia and Captivate.

The learning and development of the training courses are aligning their deliverables to the needs of millennial workers across the globe.   

    Virtual Schooling Part II

    Would you have appreciated the opportunity to take online courses when you were in school? If the opportunity were available I would have appreciated the chance to take the online course. I was a shy student and did not like to talk or take part in the discussions at school.  I think an online course might have been helpful to allow me to write my comments.
    What/How is online learning utilized in your current situation?
    In my current situation online learning is used to train instructors and facilitators in face-to-face learning. I think that it is a strange combination.  Why not just offer students the opportunity to learn online. 

    The types of learners come from across different types of generations. The generation learners align with the research regarding generational learners.

    Sunday, April 5, 2015

    Home What I Know about Online Learning - Part II

    After reading the resources I believe that online learning is evolving at a very rapid pace.
    The article Top Ten Myths about Virtual Schools is really very relevant to the how people view virtual schooling and online learning. I think it will take a lot of effort and marketing to overcome the myths.  

    In relationship to my original post I don’t believe I leaned lean toward any of the myths, now anyway, as I have in the past. My understanding of online learning has changed through my experience and education. I have heard students and parents repeat some of the myths.  I think myth number seven is probably the one that I have heard students and parents agree with the most.  From my experience I have found that online courses are just as rigorous, if not more so than face-to-face courses. 
    It think Clark’s (2007) article in this week’s reading provides a great foundation of the history of virtual courses. Sometimes, I wonder why the history or timeline of online learning is not included as part of the introduction of online learning.  Perhaps it would give students some insight that technology of today has evolved and this is not something new just for today, but it has been around and been successful. 

    I did at one time think myth nine was true in the fact that the virtual or online courses needed to be connected via the use and integration of technology. Because the technology was the center focus and took away from the course content. I can understand the misgiving as the technology seemed to be taking the forefront rather than the content of the course if students had a hard time getting connections or accessing the course. What makes the difference is the teacher and how well the course is designed. Teachers are the directors, designers and delivers of the material the technology is the resource tool.   
    While watching Dr. Siko’s presentation on You-Tube, I was surprised to hear Michigan was the first state to initiate a requirement for all students to have an online experience. In addition, that online courses would be outsourced by school districts.  How are teachers and educators going to overcome these myths about virtual schools? Will these myths fade as virtual schools become more successful?