AIE Blog

News and notes on innovations and education reform in Louisiana.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The state of Florida leads the nation in online learning. Under former Governor Jeb Bush, the state encouraged virtual education to flourish at Florida Virtual Schools. The courses are free to all K-12 Florida students and available worldwide to non-Florida students on a tuition basis. This innovative school model is breaking down barriers to knowledge since it was founded in 1997.

Here in Louisiana, the road is not as smooth for online learning – but it should be. Louisiana Virtual School is only a high school focused curriculum. And it is a supplement to traditional schooling for Louisiana students only.

The outlook for virtual charter schools is even worse. The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education will be considering several charter applications for virtual schools in the coming months. The attacks and legal wrangling over the proposed schools is holding back our state. Baton Rouge's The Advocate reports:

A change in Louisiana law last year is forcing local school systems to pay for many new charter schools whether they like them or not.

School superintendents are starting to fight back. Last month, superintendents flooded the state with letters of complaint directed at three proposals to create strictly online charter schools that in two cases would draw students from all over Louisiana.

Louisiana is the focus of national attention in education innovation – but this is surely not showing our best side.

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